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Norma and Lasco push Baltic indexes down

  • 2002-11-07
  • Boris Epsteins
The fall in stock prices for Estonia's seat belt maker Norma and Latvia's shiping firm Latvijas Kugnieciba was behind the Baltic List index fall of 1.15 percent to 160.76 points over the past week.

Looking ahead, Baltic leading stocks - Eesti Telekom and Hansapank - might post strong gains during the first week of November as European markets are awaiting a recovery after expected interest rates cuts by the European Central Bank.

The Baltic List capitalization last week dropped by 1 percent to 2.8 billion euros.

Slow trade in Tallinn and a shorter working week in Lithuania caused the weekly turnover to also drop to half the previous week's results, on 2.4 million euros. Ninety-four percent of the total turnover came from trade in Estonian stocks, while the rest was shared almost equally between Latvian and Lithuanian shares.

In Estonia, Norma, which used to be very quiet with low volatility, finished the week down 9 percent. The shares fell under selling pressure from small investors after the announcement of a possible production stoppage of AvtoVAZ's assembly lines in Russia. AvtoVAZ is the main buyer of Norma seat belts.

Norma fell as low as 59.46 kroons (3.80 euros) on Oct. 31 and finished the week with a loss of 9 percent at 62.74 kroons.

In Latvia, announcements of poor results by Latvijas Kugnieciba (LASCO) caused the stock price to plummet 10 percent. The company posted a nine-month loss of 3.65 million lats.

As expected, the shipping company's shares did not, however, drop below the 0.25 lats margin, and are not expected to in the near future.

Markets in Lithuania were soporific due to the four-day week. Even the release of better-than-expected financial results by Lietuvos Telekomas, the market's leading blue chip stock, failed to inspire investors. Share prices in the fixed-line telephone monopoly remained stable at 0.78 litas, but turnover came to a mere 150,600 litas.