Snaige showboats on upbeat markets

  • 2003-02-13
  • Thomas Foulquier

Lithuania's refrigerator maker, Snaige, jumped 13 percent over the week to reach a new record high on investor enthusiasm that the company's record-breaking performance will continue. Much of the sharp growth, however, was due to the company's limited free float, said traders.

Overall the Baltic List turnover reached 3.5 million euros in the week ending Feb. 7, with Estonian stocks contributing more than 80 percent of the turnover.

The Baltic Index finished the week up 2.77 percent at 179.68 points.

In Tallinn, Norma and Merko Ehitus shed 1.63 percent and 0.36 percent respectively and were among the week's losers. The car safety equipment maker AS Norma earlier announced its decision to lay off 60 employees and decrease its production in February and March due to the downturn in Russia's automotive industry.

"The news of the layoff had been expected, but it was apparent that some investors preferred to come out of the share," Hansabank Markets broker Romet Tepper told BNS. "But long-term investors were on the buying side. Fundamentally nothing has changed and the Norma share continues to be one of the cheapest on the market," the broker said.

The week's loser was Pieno Zvaigzdes, where the Lithuanian dairy's stock fell 2.44 percent on fears of a trade war with Latvia.

Lietuvos Telekomas jumped 2.38 percent, and in Riga the Latvian shipping company Latvijas Kugnieciba (LASCO), which announced it would sell two of its tankers, climbed 4.38 percent.

Undoubtedly the highlight in Tallinn was the release of Eesti Telekom's financial results, which slightly outperformed analysts' expectations. Shares in Eesti Telekom climbed 1.97 percent over the week to 5.70 euros.

Hansapank generated the week's biggest turnover and its share price climbed 1.40 percent to 15.89 euros. The Baltic's largest company by market capitalization will release its non-audited 2002 financial results on Feb.14, and analysts believe there was no need to expect a very big turnover before the report.