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Index lower as BOV and HSBC shares close lower

Following last week’s negative closing, the Malta Stock Exchange index, upheld its sell-off momentum with a further decline of 0.4 per cent to close the week at 3,166.984 points.

Due to the shortened week, following Thursday’s national holiday, the index was active in four sessions in which it declined in the first two sessions, while it gathered an insufficient gain of 0.23 per cent in the subsequent sessions.

In the week, major banking equities hampered the broader market for the entire week, as both Bank of Valletta plc and HSBC Bank Malta plc drifted lower by registering notable losses.

Conversely, International Hotels Investments plc pulled back from last week’s significant decline as it returned to winning grounds, while RS2 Software plc sustained its bullish momentum.

During the week, total turnover was on high notes of €920,867 traded over 17 equities in which gainers continued to prevail, as six closed higher, five edged lower, while the remaining six closed unchanged. Total number of shares traded amounted to 642,096 in volume which were executed across 112 transactions.

Meanwhile, in the Government Stock Market, local investors tended to shift their assets towards more attractive returns, as in the week most of the yields rose. In fact from the 16 active stocks, 12 stocks moved lower, while four appreciated in value, mainly long-dates issues. Total turnover for the week amounted to just below €8.9 million, thus lower from the €10.8 million recorded in the previous week.

In the Corporate Bonds market, investors showed confidence in the local corporate debt, as from the 15 active issues nine posted gains, two dipped in value, while four closed unchanged. The 4% AX Investments plc 2013 issue emerged as the main gainer with a 0.7 per cent increase.

From the hoteliers industry, International Hotels Investments plc emerged as one of the main contributors, in halting possible further losses. In fact, the equity advanced by 3.6 per cent, thus recuperating from last week’s 5.7 per cent depreciation. Total number of shares traded totalled 21,517 which were executed across three deals to push the share price towards the €0.86 price level.

Likewise, Go plc extended their push for the fifth consecutive week with a further gain of 0.9 per cent, thus recording a staggering appreciation of 11.5 per cent from the third week of November. A total of 16 transactions which consisted of 47,875 shares changed hands to close the week at €1.12.

From the banking sector, both Bank of Valletta plc and HSBC Bank Malta plc fell under renewed selling pressure. The former slipped by a further 2.3 per cent over the first three sessions of the week across volumes of 174,931 to end the week at €2.35. Similarly, the latter headed southwards for the second consecutive week with a 1.8 per cent decline over relatively low volumes of 9,640 shares to re-move towards the €2.67 level.

In line with its peers, FIMBank plc plummeted by 3.6 per cent on Tuesday to close at $0.80 level. On the contrary, Lombard Bank plc shares were topped by a further gain of 2.2 per cent following last week’s inactivity, to close higher at €1.84 on high turnover which exceeded 108,000 shares.

Similarly, Malta International Airport plc rose by 0.2 per cent on Friday to close at €1.80, while Midi plc surged by eight per cent over two sessions to close the week at €0.27. Meanwhile, the other gainer for the week was RS2 Software plc which lengthened its ascending position by 3.6 per cent, thus posting a gain of just below 21 per cent on a year-to-date basis.

The other active IT operators were Crimsonwing plc and 6pm Holdings plc which both closed the week unchanged. A total of 28,050 shares were traded in the former, while a single trade of 1,960 in volume was executed in the latter equity.

On a negative note, both Maltapost plc and Medserv plc closed the week in negative territory. The former shaved-off 5.6 per cent from last week’s 15.4 per cent gain to close at €0.85, while the latter turned negative in the last trading minutes of the week with a minimal loss of 0.3 per cent to close at €3.94.

Meanwhile, the other non-movers for the week were Simonds Farsons Cisk plc, Grand Harbour Marina plc, Plaza Centres plc and Malita Investment plc which all closed unchanged at €2.50, €1.81, €0.54 and €0.50 respectively.

This article, which was compiled by Jesmond Mizzi Financial Advisors Limited, 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.

For further information contact Jesmond Mizzi Financial Advisors Limited at 67, Level 3, South Street, Valletta, or on Tel: 2122 4410, or e-mail [email protected]

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