Banks lift MSE Index up – HSBC up 10.92%

MSE Trading Report for week ending April 17, 2009

Banks lift MSE Index up – HSBC up 10.92%

The Malta Stock Exchange Index ended the trading week higher than the previous week for the first time in 12 weeks since the week ending January 16, closing at 2747.935 points, an increase of 3.82% from last week. The MSE Index is now at a loss of 14.35% year to date, after Friday’s increase of 2.792%.

During the week, nine equities were negotiated, with five closing in positive territory, three closing in negative territory, and one remaining unchanged.

During the week a total of 228 deals were registered on the Malta Stock Exchange with a turnover of over €7.31m, including three put-through trades amounting to €32,491. In the equity market, 130 transactions were executed for a total value of €244,475, while in the corporate bond market 36 transactions were carried out for a total value of €270,451. The government bond market saw 45 deals changing hands for a total value of €890,897, while 14 transactions were carried out in the treasury bills market for a total value of over €5.87m.

In the banking sector, all four banks registered increases in their share prices. HSBC Bank Malta plc (HSBC) was the best performing equity during the week, as it registered an increase of 10.92% in its share price, and thus recovering some of its losses year to date, as it is now at a loss of 12.7%. HSBC closed the week at €2.357, appreciating by €0.232 from last week, as 26,239 shares changed hands over 36 deals. The equity traded at a high of €2.357 and a low of €2.14.

FIMBank plc recovered almost all of last week’s 6.47% loss, as this week it registered a rise of 6.15%, having closed the week at US $1.38, an increase of US $0.08. FIMBank traded 3,706 shares across six transactions.

Bank of Valletta plc (BOV) increased by €0.103 on the week. BOV closed the week at €2.20, a rise of 4.91%, with 55,666 shares changing hands over 54 deals, for a total value of €116,755. The equity traded at a low of €2.05 and a high of €2.20. During the week, BOV plc announced that the Board of Directors is scheduled to meet on Thursday April 30, 2009 to consider and approve the Group’s and the Bank’s interim financial statements for the six months ended March 31, 2009, and consider, and if thought fit, to declare an interim dividend.

Lombard Bank plc registered a marginal increase of €0.02 on the week to register an increase of 0.82%, having traded only on Friday. Lombard traded just 2,170 shares over two deals, closing the week at €2.45.

GO plc was the only equity to retain its share price of €1.55, as it traded 33,502 shares across 24 transactions during the week. The equity traded at €1.50 but bounced back to €1.55.

Malta International Airport plc (MIA) increased by just €0.01, or 0.49%, during the week. MIA closed the week at €2.06, having traded 2,000 shares on three deals.

MaltaPost plc was the worst performing equity during the week, losing €0.028 on just one deal of 2,000 shares on Monday, having closed at €0.70.

Plaza Centres plc was one of the equities to register a loss in its share price, closing the week at €1.70, therefore losing 1.16%, or €0.02 on the week. Plaza traded 1,500 shares across two deals.

International Hotel Investments (IHI plc) registered a loss of 2.69%, having traded twice on Friday. IHI closed at €0.759, a decrease of €0.021, as 1,505 shares changed hands.

On Monday, IHI plc announced that at a meeting held on April 9, 2009, the Board of Directors approved the Preliminary Statement of Annual Results for 2008.

The Group’s turnover for 2008 amounted to €127.97m, an increase of 23% on the turnover registered in 2007 (€104.82m). Part of this increase is attributable to the fact that the results of both the Corinthia Bab Africa Hotel and Commercial Centre in Tripoli and the Corinthia Hotel Prague have, in 2008, been included for the full year, whereas in 2007 they were only included as from the month following acquisition, that is June 2007. Moreover, while the hotels in Tripoli and Lisbon registered significant increases in their turnover levels over the previous year, the Russian and Czech hotel properties registered a decrease, with the properties in Malta and Hungary retaining a stable position. Profit before Taxation amounted to €14m, compared to a profit of €10m in 2007. Thus the Group registered a 39.9% increase in its profits. Earnings per share for the year 2008 remained unchanged at €0.03.

Following the annual revaluation of the Group’s hotel properties at the end of 2008, as a result of the continued improved performance of the Lisbon property, the Group reversed an impairment that had been recognised on this property in previous years amounting to €12.84m. On the other hand, the Group recognised impairment losses of €1.23m on the Corinthia Hotel St George’s Bay in Malta and of €8.07m on the Corinthia Hotel Prague.

The fair values of the investment properties held by the Group in St. Petersburg, were increased by a net amount of €3.5m on the basis of an expert opinion of Colliers International, a firm of real estate consultants. The Group also recognised a revaluation uplift of €5m on the Commercial Centre in Tripoli, Libya and a further €18m on a parcel of land adjacent to the Corinthia Bab Africa Hotel on which, in 2008, the Group acquired a 99-year lease with development rights.

The Board of Directors did not recommend the payment of a dividend.

This article which was compiled by Jesmond Mizzi Financial Services Limited (JMFS) does not intend to give investment advice and the contents therein should not be construed as such.  JMFS is licensed to conduct investment services by the MFSA.  The directors or related parties, including the company, and their clients are likely to have an interest in securities mentioned in this article.  For further information contact JMFS at 67/3, South Street, Valletta or on Tel: 21224410 or email [email protected].