No clear trend in the Baltic stock markets

  • 1999-01-21
Last week there were no clear or unified influences dictating trading on the Baltic bourses. Trading was very stable in Latvia, while share prices slid in Tallinn and jumped in speculative trading in Hermis and Ukio banks' shares in Vilnius.

Bank shares are likely to attract market players this coming week.

Latvijas Unibanka's announcement of considerably worse than expected losses (8.7 million lats) on Friday evening could set the tone for trading this coming week, perhaps dragging down other shares with it.

The Estonian securities market, which is more sensitive to world trends, might pick up in the beginning of the week on the coattails of an improvement on international markets. However, movements in share prices will depend strongly on the announcement of earnings by the two major banks - Hansapank and Uhispank - expected at the beginning of the week.

The situation on the Lithuanian market is also likely to be strongly influenced by the announcement of banks' results. The most likely result after the strong rise in Hermis' share price will be for Vilniaus Bankas' share price to rise as well. The difference in the share prices of the two banks may narrow after a correction in Hermis' share price.

Some of Latvia's brokers may soon suffer from the decision by Uhispank, Unibanka and Vilniaus Bankas to stop competing against each other. Vilnius Bank's VB Financial Markets in Latvia is the likely first victim of this policy, and the fate of Tallinna Pank Securities Latvia, owned by Uhispank, is also not clear.