MSE index back in positive territory

MSE Trading Report for week ending October 1, 2010

MSE index back in positive territory

Notwithstanding the negative start to the week, the Malta Stock Exchange Index managed to close the week higher following three positive performances. Total turnover across all traded securities reached nearly Euro21.5m, with the fixed-income market still in the limelight. The main contributor to this surge in activity was the Government Stock market, with turnover increasing to Euro19.3m, more than double last week’s turnover. Meanwhile despite investors’ attention being focused on this sector, the equity market moved 0.5 per cent higher to end the week at 3,395.689 points.

In the Government Stock market 29 issues were active with the majority of the long-dated bonds closing higher, while three transactions of Euro1.05m were executed across three Treasury Bills. In the Corporate Bond market nearly Euro700,000 was traded over 114 deals of 690,435 nominal. Meanwhile in the equity market turnover increased to Euro369,869 as 249,513 shares were executed over 106 transactions.

In the banking sector, FIMBank plc was the top performing equity having finished the week with a gain of 2.06 per cent or $0.02. Notwithstanding a sharp decline during Thursday’s session to $0.92 the equity managed to erase the loss within the session ending at $0.99, the week’s closing price. Over 79,000 shares were traded over five transactions. On Thursday, minutes after close of trading the Bank announced that it had submitted an application for a new bond issue with the Listing Authority bearing an interest rate of 4.25 per cent maturing in 2013. Existing shareholders and bondholders of the company as at September 30, 2010 will be entitled to subscribe to the bonds at a 1 per cent discount to their par value.

It was an uneventful week for Bank of Valletta plc shares managing only a slight gain of 0.31 per cent in the opening session reaching a price of Euro3.24. This closing price was maintained in the following four trading days of the week. Meanwhile, throughout the week turnover in the equity declined to over Euro92,000 as 28,472 shares were dealt over 24 transactions. As at the end of the third quarter, the equity’s performance is up by nearly 5 per cent.

On similar trading volume, HSBC Bank Malta plc failed to record a change in price ending Friday’s trading session at Euro2.855 notwithstanding the price ranging between a weekly low of Euro2.83 and a high of Euro2.86. A total of 21 deals of 27,687 shares were executed.

Similarly, Lombard Bank plc shares traded unchanged at Euro2.74 as trading volume remained low as 905 shares were dealt across one deal. Middlesea Insurance plc closed flat at Euro0.93 as 5,300 shares were traded. The equity’s performance in the third quarter reduced the gains previously made by 11.6 per cent, despite still showing a year to date gain of 15.67%.

On the negative side, Malta International Airport plc headed the list with a loss of 1.38 per cent or Euro0.021 to end the week at Euro1.50. The airport operator was the second most liquid equity as trading volume increased to 36,773 shares, up from nearly 26,000 shares traded last week. Despite this week’s decline, the equity is still up by 25 per cent on the year.

For the second week running, GO plc shares closed in negative territory with a 0.54 per cent or Euro0.01 decline to end the week at Euro1.83.  A total of 10,137 shares changed hands across nine transactions. Meanwhile, two deals of 3,000 shares in Island Hotels Group Holdings plc depreciated the price by 1.01 per cent to Euro0.98.

MaltaPost plc returned in positive territory as the equity managed to recoup last week’s lost ground ending the week at Euro0.90. In fact, on Wednesday the equity moved almost six per cent higher and traded flat the following day as a total of 31,104 shares were dealt across eight deals.

In the IT sector, Loqus Holdings plc gained a hefty 60 per cent or Euro0.12 as the equity’s price climbed from Euro0.20 to Euro0.32, the week’s closing price. However, this week’s gain was only supported by 875 shares dealt across one transaction.

International Hotel Investments plc also closed the week on a positive note having posted a gain of 2.41 per cent or Euro0.02 to end the week at Euro0.85. The equity plunged by 2.41 per cent in the opening session of the week, however it returned in the green during the mid-week session with a gain of nearly 5 per cent.

Likewise, Plaza Centres plc moved 2.12 per cent higher to end the week at Euro1.685. A total of 5,000 shares were traded on one transaction. Meanwhile, Medserv plc traded unchanged at Euro4.28 as two deals of 1,800 shares were recorded.

On Wednesday, Simonds Farsons Cisk plc announced their interim results for the six months ending July 31, 2010 which show a profit after tax increase of 19 per cent to Euro2.2m, while the Group’s turnover increased by 5 per cent to Euro35m. The Board of Directors declared an interim dividend of Euro0.0133 per share and will be payable on October 22, 2010 to ordinary shareholders who appear on the register of members of the company on October 8, 2010.

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]