MSE Index down 1 per cent as trading activity falters

MSE Trading Report for week ending August 20, 2010

MSE Index down 1 per cent as trading activity falters

The Malta Stock Exchange Index reverted to negative territory this week ending the week at 3,473.532 points, resulting in a decline of 0.97 per cent. Throughout the week turnover in the equity market declined as investors shifted their attention to Government Stocks as turnover in this market surged. Out of the ten active equities FIMBank plc was the only equity to mark a gain, five equities closed in the red while the remaining four closed unchanged at last week’s closing price.

Turnover across all traded securities increased to over Eur4m compared to Eur2.9m last week.  In the Equity market 125 transactions of 418,206 shares were executed for a total value of Eur542,561. In the Government Stocks market turnover reached over Eur2.9m as a total of 79 deals were executed across 19 issues. In the Corporate Bonds market 60 deals of 577,341 nominal for a total value of Eur0.5m were recorded. No trading took place in the Treasury Bills market.

MaltaPost plc shares headed downwards by a hefty 8.89 per cent during Tuesday’s session supported by low volume as 1,324 shares were dealt across two transactions. This equity was again active during yesterday’s session trading flat at Eur0.82. Despite this week’s heavy share price decline, the equity’s year-to-date performance is still up by over 17 per cent.

HSBC Bank Malta plc shares followed with a 2.36 per cent fall. The bank was the only financial to post a loss, ending the week at Eur2.90. For the second week running the equity failed to gain ground losing value during two sessions, while it closed unchanged in the remaining three. A total of 31,418 shares, up from over 19,000 traded last week, were dealt across 31 transactions, as turnover reached nearly Eur92,000. The bank is expected to pay its interim dividend on August 24, 2010.

Meanwhile, following a mixed week, Bank of Valletta plc shares closed flat at Eur3.26 notwithstanding the price hovered between a low of Eur3.22 and a high of Eur3.30. The equity kicked off the week with a significant 1.23 per cent gain over four thin trades. However, the upbeat was short lived as the equity recorded losses in the following two trading days, while it managed to recoup some of the lost ground in the closing two sessions. Liquidity in the equity declined significantly as 42,352 shares were traded over 38 deals.

On a positive note, FIMBank plc was the week’s only gainer, having gained 2.04 per cent to end the week at $1. On Tuesday the equity lost 1.02 per cent over seven deals of 196,951 shares, as all deals were executed at a weekly low of $0.97. However, on Friday the equity moved 3.09 per cent higher over a meagre 173 shares dealt over one deal. Despite this week’s gain, the equity’s year-to-date performance is still down by over nine per cent.

International Hotel Investments plc (IHI) shares are back in negative territory after having surged by over seven per cent during the previous week. In fact the hotel operator lost 1.11 per cent over twenty deals of 88,840 shares, for a total value of nearly Eur80,000. The equity’s price barely fluctuated having traded at a high of Eur0.90 and a low of Eur0.89, the price at which the equity ended the week under review.

In the financial sector, Lombard Bank plc and Middlesea Insurance plc were the other active equities. The former traded unchanged at Eur2.80 over one transaction of 1,000 shares while the insurance firm failed to move higher as the last deal of the week was executed at Eur1.03, last week’s closing price. A total of 15,000 shares were traded over five transactions.

Meanwhile, during yesterday’s trading session Global Capital plc announced that the Board of Directors is scheduled to meet on August 26, 2010 to consider and approve the Interim Results of the Company for the period ending June 30, 2010.

For the second consecutive week Malta International Airport plc shares closed in decline. The airport operator shed 1.31 per cent or Eur0.021 during Tuesday’s session over 14,000 shares while it closed flat yesterday at Eur1.58 on similar trading volume.

Active only during Friday’s session was Island Hotels Group Holdings plc which lost a meagre 0.3 per cent to finish the week at Eur0.997, down from its previous close of Eur1. A total of 3,000 shares changed hands across one deal.

For the third consecutive week GO plc shares failed to register a change in price. The equity’s price fluctuated between a low of Eur1.85 and a high of Eur1.90, the week’s closing price. Turnover in the equity reached nearly Eur16,000 as 8,395 shares were dealt across six transactions.

On Thursday Medserv plc announced that the Board of Directors is scheduled to meet on August 30, 2010 to consider and approve the Interim Financial Statements of the Company for the financial period ended June 30, 2010.

On Friday, 6pm Holdings plc also announced that the Board of Directors is scheduled to meet on August 25, 2010 to consider and approve the company’s Half Yearly Financial Report for the period ended June 30, 2010.

This article, which was compiled by Jesmond Mizzi, Joint Managing Director of Atlas JMFS Investment Services Limited, does not intend to give investment advice and the contents therein should not be construed as such. Atlas JMFS is licensed to conduct investment services by the MFSA and is a Member Firm of the Malta Stock Exchange. 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 Atlas JMFS at 67, Level 3, South Street, Valletta, or on Tel: 21224410, or email [email protected].