Hansapank hits record high

  • 2003-05-15
  • Baltic News Service
The Baltic Index of 15 Baltic blue chips soared 7.6 percent over the week ending May 9 on exceptionally light trading.

Weekly turnover on Baltic List stocks reached 11.3 million euros, of which 88.8 percent, or 10 million euros, came on Estonian stocks. (Lithuanian stocks brought in 7.4 percent and Latvian stocks 3.8 percent.)

The biggest price gains were registered by the Lithuanian cheese maker Rksikio Suris, whose stock rocketed 22 percent, and Ventspils Nafta, whose shares jumped 18 percent.

The only loser on the Baltic List last week was Latvijas Gaze, which backtracked 1.7 percent over the week.

The leader of the pack, as is usual among Baltic stocks, was Hansapank, which rose more than 5 percent for the week to close at 17.64 euros, the highest level since its appearance on the markets in April 1997.

Turnover on Hansapank amounted to 128.7 million kroons, or 80 percent of total trade on the market.

"Next week I would expect the price adjustment of Hansa to continue as the levels are already too high," Suprema broker Riho Talumaa said.

Shares in Eesti Telekom climbed 6.2 percent to 6.34 euros over the week, the highest closing level since November 15, 2000. The trade was 23.2 million kroons.

In Latvia, the center of attention was dominated by two stocks - Latvijas Balzams and Ventspils Nafta. The buyout offer by the distiller's new owner - Netherlands-registered S.P.I. Distilleries B.V. - helped the stock lead the market with 3.8 million lats in trade, most of which came in block deals. The new owner has now raised its stake to 82.59 percent.

Also, the Lithuanian newspaper Lietuvos Rytas reported that Latvijas Balzams had placed the highest bid for 92 percent in alcohol producer Stumbras, offering 158 million litas.

Ventspils Nafta soared 17 percent to 1.06 lats last week on trade of 221,531 lats, the second highest turnover on the Riga Stock Exchange.

However, interest is not based on long-term growth prospects of the oil terminal; rather, it is the present owner's - LNT's - attempt to consolidate control by purchasing the 5 percent stake set aside for it that has fueled investor speculation.

Lithuanian stocks were mostly higher past week, with investors focusing their attention on the beverage companies slated for privatization and power distribution companies.

Stumbras, listed on the Current List, jumped 7.7 percent to close at 5.15 litas on a turnover of 1 million litas, and Alita surged 29.8 percent to 1.22 litas on a turnover of 421,600 litas.

Vilniaus Degtine shot up 16.22 percent to 0.86 litas, but turnover came to a modest 53,600 litas amid a lack of interest on the selling side. Market experts see Vilniaus Degtine as the most attractive of the four companies in terms of its offering price.

Listed on the Official List, Lietuvos Telekomas gained 3.74 percent to 1.11 litas, while the popular refrigerator maker Snaige climbed 5.4 percent on turnover of 252,400 litas.