Downward pressure drags equity index lower.

MSE Trading Report for week ending November 10, 2017

The MSE Equity Total Return Index continued to drift lower as the index declined by 1.4% to 8,684.783 points. A total of 14 issues were active during the week of which eight closed lower, while MIDI plc shares registered the only positive performance during the week. Total turnover declined from €1.78 million to €1.67 million.

All banking equities were active during the week of which two headed south, while the other two closed flat.

Bank of Valletta plc shares initiated its rights issue on Wednesday as the price of the equity oscillated during the week, reaching highs of €1.88 to lows of €1.75, closing flat at the €1.80 price level. The equity managed to generate a total turnover of €790,397 spread over 126 trades.

On Thursday, HSBC Bank Malta plc. announces that HSBC Life Assurance (Malta) Limited, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Company, that it had entered into a Portfolio Transfer Agreement with Lombard International Assurance S.A. for the sale of HLA’s policies of insurance governed by the Wealth Insurance Italy portfolio.

As at September 30 2017, the insurance portfolio being transferred had total funds under management of circa €500m and produced gross annual management charges of approximately €780,000 in 2016. The equity traded negatively during Monday and Tuesday sessions closing the week 1.6% lower at €1.86, an 11-month low.

Similarly, three trades during yesterday’s session amounting to 79,900 shares saw the price of FIMBank plc plunge by 11.4% to close the session at $ 0.62 – hitting a 20-month low.

Meanwhile its peer, Lombard Bank plc closed flat over two trades on slim volume to close the week at the €2.20 level.

On Wednesday, Malta International Airport plc announced that from April until the end of October the total amount of passenger movements amounted to 4,249,321. This translates into an increase of more than 600,000 passenger movements over the same comparable period in 2016.

Growth in passenger numbers in the summer months was observed in parallel with an upturn of 13.3 per cent in aircraft movements and an increase of 16.1 per cent in seat capacity, mainly stemming from an enhanced flight schedule for the season.

The top drivers of passenger traffic to Malta International Airport were the United Kingdom, Italy, Germany, France, and Spain. Growing by 9.6 per cent over last year, the UK accounted for 1,025,055 passengers, which is almost a quarter of the airport’s total traffic for summer.

Meanwhile, yesterday, the company issued its interim Directors’ Statement in which it reported that during the period under review (January 1, 2017 – September 30, 2017), the financial position of the Company has remained sound and its performance is superior to 2016.

The turnover for the first nine months of 2017 was €63.1 million, an increase of 13.7% compared to the first three quarters of 2016. Total expenditure increased by €24.1 million, while the profit for the period January to September 2017 increased by 25.2% to €21.4 million. The company further stated that it remains optimistic that the last quarter will follow the positive trend registered so far and is expected to exceed the financial targets as you announced last July.

Despite the positive results the equity closed the week in the red by 1.3% to close at €4.69. A total turnover of €121,582 was generated between 17 transactions.

International Hotel Investments plcshares closed marginally lower as the equity closed at the €0.63 price level. A total turnover of €125,600 was spread between eight deals.

In the telecommunications sector, GO plc shares shaved 0.6% of its value as the equity closed the week at €3.53. A total of 25,900 shares were exchanged among 10 transactions.

Insurance firm, Mapfre Middlesea plc shares, declined by 5.8% during mid-week trading, but two successive positive sessions during Thursday and Friday eased the downward pressure closing 1% lower at €1.90.

On a similar note, RS2 Software plc plummeted on Monday as the equity depreciated by 5.7%, but curbed some of the losses between Tuesday and Thursday sessions. Week-on-week, the equity declined by 4.8% to close at €1.57.

On Thursday, the board of directors of Simonds Farsons Cisk plc(SFC) announced that at a meeting held on November 9, 2017, the board of the Planning Authority has voted against the recommendation of the Planning Directorate for the approval of permit for the creation of a business park along Mdina Road, Mriehel.  In view of the significant uncertainty caused by the indicative decision of the PA, the board determined that it had no option but to put into abeyance the plan to spin-off the Company’s shareholding in Trident Estates plc and the subsequent listing of Trident on the Official List of the Malta Stock Exchange. Accordingly, Trident has requested the Listing Authority of the MFSA to defer consideration of a Prospectus submitted in this regard.

The all-time high level reached by SFC on Monday at €9.69 was short lived following the announcement post-trading on Thursday. Yesterday, the equity’s price traded between the €9.19 and €9.59 price range. This effected the over performance during the week as the equity fell by 1.6% to close at €9.50.

Retail conglomerate,PG plc closed unchanged despite being active during the week as the equity closed at the €1.48 price level, on a turnover of 96,133 shares spread over 12 deals.

In the property sector, MIDI plc shares outperformed its peers during the week, as the equity gained 3.1% closing at €0.33 – reaching a seven-month high.

Meanwhile, its peers Malita Investments plc and Malta Properties Company plc close the week unchanged at €0.751 and €0.51 respectively.

In the corporate debt market a total of 37 issues were active during the week of which the gainers and losers tallied to 11 a piece. The 5% Global Capital plc Unsecured € 2021 continued to trade in negative territory for the third consecutive session as the bond price declined by 0.8% to close at €97. Meanwhile, 4.35% SD Finance plc Unsecured € 2027, ended a two-week losing streak as the price of the bond appreciated by 0.9% at €103.74.

On Thursday, the board of Directors of Mediterranean Bank plc, by means of a number of board resolutions, approved and accepted a series of capital contributions with the last one being on November 7, 2017 from the Bank’s majority shareholder, MeDirect Group Limited, amounting to €67,400,000.

In the sovereign debt market, a total of 20 issues were active of which 12 closed lower, while eight lost ground. The 2.1% MGS 2039(I) r erased the majority of last week’s advancement as the bond price declined by 1.2% to close the week at €100.27, having traded at €102.40.