The MSE Equity Total Return Index bounced back from the previous week’s loss, as it closed 0.66 per cent higher at 9,771.367 points. Performances in the equity market were quite balanced, as from the 22 active equities, gainers amounted to eight while seven equities headed south. Investor participation was lower than the previous week, as a turnover of €2.4 million was generated over 277 transactions. Medserv plc (Medserv) and Simonds Farsons Cisk plc (SFC) were among the top drivers of the positive performance.

Medserv kicked off the week strongly with a 5.26 per cent increase in price, to reach the highest closing price in over seven months at €1.20, at which it closed the week. Despite this surge in price only three transactions of a combined 3,300 shares were executed last week. The company announced that the board shall meet on August 30, in order to consider, and if thought fit, approve the unaudited half-yearly report for the first six months of 2019.

SFC fully recovered the previous week’s loss, as it regained four per cent to recapture the €10.40 level. The equity traded six times as 7,038 shares changed hands over six trades.

Performances in the banking sector were predominantly positive, led by FIMBank plc, which climbed 2.44 per cent to $0.63. Traded volume amounted to 47,010 shares, spread across two deals.

Meanwhile, Bank of Valletta plc was the most liquid equity, as 402,309 shares were exchanged over 80 transactions. The equity bounced back from the lowest price in almost a decade set last week, climbing 2.27 per cent to €1.125, having traded at a low of €1.10.

HSBC Bank Malta plc had also closed the previous week at a multi-year low. However, unlike its peer, the share price was unable to recover, falling another 0.65 per cent to €1.52. A total of 24,892 shares traded over 11 transactions.

In the same sector, Lombard Bank Malta plc closed unchanged at €2.30, in spite of three deals of 10,025 shares.

In the telecommunications sector, GO plc traded heavily, as €438,261 worth of shares changed ownership over 21 trades. As a result, the equity erased the previous week’s gain, as it was down 1.74 per cent to €4.52.

Its spin-off, BMIT Technologies plc (BMIT) issued a circular to shareholders in connection with the resolution which shall be voted on at the Extraordinary General Meeting, to be held on August 6.

The resolution relates to the promise of sale agreement which was announced back in May, in which BMIT has bound itself to purchase and acquire a property which houses a significant part of the BMIT Group’s data centre facility in Ħandaq, Qormi. The agreement is subject to certain terms and conditions, including approval at the upcoming Extraordinary General Meeting. If approved, the purchase shall be made against a consideration of €4 million.

Shares of BMIT were quite active on the Malta Stock Exchange last week, as 332,878 shares traded across 20 deals. The outcome was a modest gain of 0.95 per cent, to close at €0.53.

Elsewhere, a couple of deals of 31,450 International Hotel Investments plc shares had no impact on the previous week’s closing price of €0.82.

Malta International Airport plc announced that its board is scheduled to meet on July 25, to consider and approve the company’s interim financial statements for the first half of 2019. During the meeting, the directors will also consider the payment of an interim dividend.

The equity generated a substantial turnover of €344,156 over 27 deals, to close 2.16 per cent higher at €7.10, having traded at a low of €6.90 and a high of €7.15.

The local postal operator, MaltaPost plc traded three times, as 10,100 shares changed ownership. The share price, temporarily reached €1.31, before retracting to an unchanged price of €1.29.

The worst performer of the week was in the insurance sector, as a single deal of just 120 GlobalCapital plc shares dragged the price 5.3 per cent to €0.25.

Its peer, Mapfre Middlesea plc posted contrasting sessions towards the start of the week, ultimately closing unchanged at €2.26. In total, 2,933 shares were exchanged over three deals.

Similarly, RS2 Software plc closed the week unchanged have traded at a low of €1.75 and a high of €1.83. A significant turnover of €326,508 was generated over 43 trades.

On top of the list of gainers was Loqus Holdings plc, as the share price hiked 25.93 per cent to close at €0.085, over a slim turnover of €900.

Retail conglomerate PG plc showed weakness towards the end of the week, losing 1.25 per cent in value to €1.58. Traded volume amounted to 119,105 shares over 15 trades.

The property market was mainly dominated by selling pressure, as half of the six active equities traded lower, while only Malita Investments plc posted a gain. The latter climbed a minimal 0.58 per cent to €0.865, as nine transactions of 53,750 shares were recorded.

At the other end of the spectrum, the gain recorded by Trident Estates plc during the previous week proved unsustainable, as the price dropped 3.03 per cent to return to €1.92. A total of 21,356 shares changed hands over eight trades.

Malta Properties Company plc registered an identical performance, as a single transaction of 5,440 shares was executed at €0.64, translating to a 3.03 per cent loss.

Tigné Mall plc was the most liquid in the sector, as 15 transactions were struck, generating a turnover of €125,475. The outcome was a 1.11 per cent price decline to €0.89.

The board of Plaza Centres plc is scheduled to meet on July 31, to consider and approve the interim financial statements for the first six months of 2019. A sole deal of 1,500 shares was executed at an unchanged price of €1.00.

Similarly, one deal of 16,000 Main Street Complex plc, had no bearing on the share price of €0.61.

In the local corporate debt market, 43 issues were active, of which 17 bonds headed north and 13 issues lost ground. The MSE Corporate Bonds Total Return Index returned to positive territory last week, as it climbed a marginal 0.1 per cent to 1,073.179 points. Turnover in the market amounted to €1.6 million. The most notable price movement was a 2.36 per cent increase in the price of the 5.1% 1923 Investments plc Unsecured € 2024, closing at €104.

The board of directors of Hili Finance Company plc announced that they had submitted an application to the Listing Authority of the Malta Financial Services Authority requesting the admissibility to listing of €80 million Unsecured Bonds maturing in 2029 guaranteed by Hili Ventures Ltd.

The new issue will have an interest coupon of 3.80 per cent and matures in 2029. A total equivalent to €40 million in bonds will be reserved for subscription by preferred applicants which include Hili Ventures Stakeholders (shareholders, directors and employees of any company forming part of Hili Ventures Group as at July 17, 2019) and Hili Ventures Bondholders.

The latter consist of bondholders, in any of the following, who appeared on the respective register as at close of business on July 17, 2019 − 5.1 per cent 1923 Investments plc Unsecured Bonds 2024, 4.5 per cent Hili Properties plc Unsecured Bonds 2025, 3.75 per cent Premier Capital plc Unsecured Bonds 2026 and the 3.85 per cent Hili Finance Company plc Unsecured Bonds 2028. The remaining €40 million in bonds will be available for subscriptions by the public.

On the sovereign debt front, performances were predominantly positive as 18 out of the 23 active issues posted gains. In fact, the MSE MGS Total Return Index advanced a sizable 0.56 per cent, to reach 1,096.277 points. Almost €15 million worth of Malta Government Stocks traded over 192 transactions. The 2.1% MGS 2039 (I) was the best performer with a 1.33 per cent increase to close the week at €117.00.

This article, which was compiled by Jesmond Mizzi Financial Advisors Ltd, does not intend to give investment advice and the contents therein should not be construed as such. The company is licensed to conduct investment services by the MFSA and is a member of the Malta Stock Exchange and a member of the Atlas Group. The directors or related parties, including the company, and their clients are likely to have an interest in securities mentioned in this article. Jesmond Mizzi is a non-executive director of Hili Ventures Ltd, the guarantor of the new bond issue of Hili Finance Company plc, which is subject to MFSA approval. For more information, contact Jesmond Mizzi Financial Advisors Ltd at 67, Level 3, South Street, Valletta, or on tel: 2122 4410, or e-mail info@jesmondmizzi.com

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