MSE Trading Report for week ending September 24, 2010

Investor’s appetite returns to Government Stocks

Following last week’s fragile gain the MSE Index closed once again in negative territory despite gains recorded by three banking equities. Despite this week’s decline the local Index, which was active over four trading sessions due to a public holiday on Tuesday, managed to bring to an end the six-day negative streak having gained ground during the week’s two closing sessions. The Index position as at yesterday stood at 3,378.718 points, down by 0.29 per cent on the week, which worsens further its yearly position which is 2.36 per cent in negative territory. Activity in the equity market declined slightly as investors shifted their attention once again to the Malta Government Stock market as bond yields declined following concerns on the sustainability of certain countries within the Euro area.

Total turnover across all traded securities doubled as Eur10m were traded. This increased was fuelled by a surge in activity in the Malta Government Stock market as turnover increased from Eur1.9m to over Eur9m spread over 22 issues. Meanwhile in the equity market turnover declined slightly to Eur312,636 as trading volume nearly reached 200,000 shares. In the Corporate Bonds market over 475,000 nominal were dealt over 80 deals as turnover amounted to Eur487,547. No activity took place in the Treasury Bills market.

Middlesea Insurance plc shares were the main contributors to this week’s decline as the equity faltered by seven per cent as two deals of 4,000 shares dealt during the mid-week session depreciated the price to Eur0.93. The insurance firm was also active on Monday, however one deal of 600 shares left the price unchanged at last week’s closing price. Notwithstanding this week’s hefty loss the equity is still enjoying a positive year-to-date performance of nearly 16 per cent.

Likewise MaltaPost plc maintained its yearly positive performance despite a weekly decline of 5.56 per cent. In fact one transaction of 5,000 shares in the week’s opening session depreciated the price by 5.56 per cent to Eur0.85, while it traded flat on Wednesday over one deal of 104 shares.

On the positive side the banking equities emerged as the only winners, led by Bank of Valletta plc which closed the week at Eur3.23, up by 0.62 per cent. Turnover in the equity regained some ground as Eur121,630 was traded, up from nearly Eur41,000 traded last week, following a substantial increase in liquidity. The equity traded at a low of Eur3.179 but gained ground on Friday to close at the weekly high of Eur3.23.

HSBC Bank Malta plc followed with a 0.53 per cent gain despite having started the week with a loss of 1.37 per cent. In fact the equity recorded two consecutive positive sessions following a loss of 1.37 per cent during the mid-week session of the week. Trading activity barely changed as 13,950 shares changed hands over 13 transactions for a total value of nearly Eur40,000.

Lombard Bank plc followed its larger peers as the Bank managed to close in the green following three straight negative weeks. In fact the equity moved higher by 0.37 per cent to end the week at Eur2.74. However, this week’s gain was only backed up by a meagre deal of 884 shares.

Conversely, Malta International Airport plc returned in negative territory as the equity lost ground during three of the four trading sessions over which activity took place throughout the week. The equity kicked off the week on the downside, however in the following session the equity nearly recouped all the losses, while it moved lower again in the closing two trading days. A total of 25,970 shares were traded across 12 deals as yesterday’s last transaction was executed at Eur1.521.

Similarly, GO plc closed the week on a negative note as all deals were executed below last week’s closing price. In fact throughout the week the equity’s price hovered between a low of Eur1.84 and a high of Eur1.86 as six deals of 8,980 shares were executed.

One deal of 200 shares in Simonds Farsons Cisk plc depreciated the price by 0.61 per cent to end the short week at Eur1.79, while Medserv plc shares traded flat as one trade of 585 shares was executed at Eur4.28.

FIMBank plc also managed to close unchanged, in spite of having started the week in the red. In fact on Monday the equity traded at its yearly low of $0.95, over a slight decline in trading volume, the equity regained all lost ground as it closed the week at $0.97. A total of 8,919 shares were dealt over seven transactions.

Meanwhile, Plaza Centres plc closed flat at Eur1.65 as five deals of 7,700 shares were executed, while Crimsonwing plc traded unchanged over one deal of 19,000 shares.

International Hotel Investments plc was the week’s most liquid equity as 62,550 shares were traded across 19 deals to finish the week flat at Eur0.83, while one deal of 2,000 shares in Island Hotels Group plc left the equity’s price unaffected at Eur0.99.

This article which was compiled by 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]