MSE Index marginally up on the week

Following the

recent turbulent performance the local Stock Exchange managed to sustain last

week’s gain by recording a further appreciation of 0.2 per cent to end the week

at 3,003.327 points, and thus minimising to just below three per cent its year-to-date

loss. The mood throughout the week oscillated from positive to negative with

the index trading on an upfront direction in three out of five sessions. Financials

emerged as the main drivers for the week with Middlesea Insurance plc being the best performer from the said

sector, while the modest gains by Go plc

topped to the index positive close. Activity in the week was concentrated over

13 equities, in which gainers and losers tallied to four while non-movers

amounted to five. In line with the previous week turnover increased further to EUR492,912

traded over 384,321 shares, dealt over 114 transactions.

In the local

Government market turnover decreased slightly to just over EUR5.7m traded over 21

issues. In this segment investors’ transmitted impetus, as 14 stocks

appreciating in value, four edged lower, while three closed flat. The

long-dated 5.25% MGS 2030 was the

most liquid issue as a total of 947,000 nominal traded over 12 transactions. Meanwhile

in the Corporate Bonds Market yields

were mixed, as from the 21 active issues eight gained ground, two closed lower,

while 11 closed sideways. The 4.8% Bank

of Valletta 2020 issue was the best performer as it gained 1.5 per cent.

In the equity market, from the banking

sector HSBC Bank Malta plc maintained

its upbeat trend by recording a further gain of 0.4 per cent. The equity was

active in four sessions as it appreciated in two, closed lower in one and

traded flat on Friday, and thus ending the week at the EUR2.60 price level. Volumes

traded amounted to 24,642 shares, dealt over 19 trades.

Likewise, Lombard Bank plc managed to snap back the minimal loss incurred in

the previous week by recording a 0.8 per cent gain to close the week at EUR2.53.

On Wednesday through a company announcement, the Bank rebutted media allegations

stating that Marfin Popular Bank Public Company Limited, which incurred a EUR2.5bn

loss through its Greek exposure, is a major shareholder in the local Bank. In

fact the company announced that the said foreign Bank is not a majority

shareholder, while it added that Lombard Bank holds no financial exposure whatsoever to any

member of the Marfin Popular Bank Group nor to any other Greek or Cypriot


On the

contrary, both Bank of Valletta plc

and FIMBank plc headed southwards.

The former declined by a minimal 0.5 per cent over considerable volumes of

122,318 shares to end the week at EUR2.17. The

Bank was active throughout the week as the share price swayed from positive to

negative in the first three sessions, while incurring the said loss in the last

two sessions of the week. Similarly, FIMBank’s share price value depreciated by

a scant 0.3 per cent on Thursday as a total of 15,000 shares traded over three

deals to end the week at $0.745.

From the financial sector, Middlesea Insurance plc was marked as

the best performer for the week. Following its recent negative performances, on

Thursday the equity surged by 4.4 per cent over a mere of 500 shares to close

at EUR0.71. On Tuesday, the company released its financial results for the year

ending December 31, 2011, in which it stated that the total Group’s profit

before tax amount to EUR3.1m compared to the EUR6.4m recorded in 2010.

Meanwhile, the company also announced

that Mr. Martin Galea will be appointed as a non- executive Director with

effect from February 27, 2012 following the resignation of Dr. Michael

Sparberg. In addition, it was also noted that Mr. Joseph F.X. Zahra notified the company of his intention to

relinquish his chairmanship following the Annual General Meeting scheduled for

April 20, 2012.       

Meanwhile, the other active financial

was Global Capital plc which

contracted by 1.1 per cent on Tuesday. A total of 5,000 shares were traded

across two transactions to end the week at EUR0.94.

From the telecommunications sector, Go plc halted its five-week strike of

losses by gaining 2.4 per cent over two sessions. The equity was active in two

sessions as it traded in positive territory to close the week at the EUR0.85

price level. Conversely, from the beverage sector Simonds Farsons Cisk plc shares slid by 1.7 per cent over a single

session to re-position itself at EUR1.71.

Meanwhile, International Hotels Investment plc closed the week unchanged at EUR0.78.

The hotelier’s equity recorded a sharp loss of 3.9 per cent on Thursday and

thus emerged as the main dragger for the index. However, on Friday it managed

to snap back all losses by registering a four per cent gain. Furthermore, both Malta International Airport plc and RS2 Software plc closed the week

unchanged, with the former closing at EUR1.70 over 9,403 shares, while the

latter kept the EUR0.55 price level over high volumes of 160,000 shares.

Finally, the other non-movers for the

week were Maltapost plc and Island Hotels Group Holdings plc and

thus both maintaining their previous closing prices at EUR0.93 and EUR0.85




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]