BORSA ITALIANA: GROWTH IN VOLUMES ON THE NUOVO MERCATO IN AUGUST AND NEW ALL-TIME HIGH FOR ETF TRADES.
MIB +24.6% SINCE MARCH 2003
In August, the Italian stock market was characterized by a growth in share prices, that was most apparent on the Nuovo Mercato. The ETF trades recorded a new all-time high in terms of the daily average number of contracts traded.
Trend of the indices
The Mib index staged a recovery that brought it close to its maximum values for the year, closing the month - after 11 positive and 9 negative sessions - at 18,365, a change of 1.5% with respect to the end of July and 8.3% with respect to the end of year 2002. The maximum for the month was scored on Tuesday 19 at 18,519, just a few points off the 2003 peak of 18 June (18,528). With respect to the minimum for the year of 12 March, this represented an upswing of 24.6%.
Movements on the Nuovo Mercato Numex index were decisively more positive and the index closed the month on 1,528, its new high for the year (the previous record of 1,433 dates back to 15 January), representing growth of 12.6% compared with end July and 16.8% with end 2002.
Trend of the continuous indices was sustantially balanced: Mibtel +0.7% (+7.6% with respect to 2002), S&P/Mib +0.5% (+7.4%), Mib30 -0.1% (+6.6%), Midex +3.6% (+15.5%). The MibSTAR index turned in a better performance than the general index (+3.1%), representing growth of 5.4% with respect to end 2002.
Taken in a European context, the Italian market trend was in line with the averages of the other markets (Amsterdam +3.8%, Paris +3.2%, Sweden +2.7%, London and Zurich +0.9%, Madrid +0.7%, Frankfurt -0.1%).
The trend differed slightly across the three macrosectors, with Financial down 0.1%, Industrial up +5.3% and Services down -0.7%. These results signify a change with respect to end 2002 of +15.5% for Financial, +5.5% for Services and +0.8% for Industrial. Of the main sectors (equal to at least 1% of the market capitalisation), the most noteworthy performances were, on the one hand, in Construction (+8.8%) and Equity Financials (+7.5%), and in Public Utilities (-1.6%) and Insurance (-2.2%) on the other. Compared with the end of the previous year, the most significant changes were seen, on the one hand, in Transportation-Tourism (+30.0%), Banks (+20.3%) and Property (+18.8%), and on the other, in Minerals-Metals-Petroleum (-7.7%) and Auto (-5.7%).
Capitalisation and listing
In the month of August, a number of important stockholding readjustment operations were concluded, with the mergers of Olivetti-Telecom Italia and Pirelli & C.-Pirelli Spa and the spin-off of Seat Pagine Gialle.
Following a slight rise in share prices, the shortening of the control chains saw the capitalisation of national listed companies rise to €463.9 billion, representing 35.6% of GDP (€458 billion at end 2002). In detail, a breakdown of the markets shows the Borsa with a figure of €451.7 billion, the Nuovo Mercato at €7.3 and the Mercato Ristretto at €4.9.
Eni once again proved to be the listed company with the highest capitalisation (€55.6 billion), followed by Tim (34.5), Enel (33.9), Telecom Italia (ex Olivetti) (30.5) and Unicredito Italiano (26.9).
On 4 August, the savings shares of Telecom Italia (ex Olivetti) and, following the spin-off of the old Seat Pagine Gialle (which by the same occasion took on the new name of Telecom Italia Media) the new Seat Pagine Gialle (ordinary and savings shares), were admitted for listing. On the same day, the ordinary and savings shares of Telecom Italia and Pirelli Spa were withdrawn. At the end of August, there were 280 companies listed, 224 of these on the Borsa (including 6 foreign companies), 44 on the Nuovo Mercato (2 foreign) and 12 on the Mercato Ristretto.
Following 24 admissions and 5 delistings, the number of listed instruments on the MCW rose from 2,087 to 2,106.
The capital increase operations of Unipol (ordinary and private) and Banca Intermobiliare were completed. Before the unexercised rights were auctioned, these operations raised a total of €1,019 and €99 million respectively. Still in progress are the capital increase operations for Aisoftware and Banca Popolare dell'Emilia Romagna.
The voluntary tender offer of Unicredito Italiano for Locat was completed in August, and this returned €38 million to the market.
With an average of 124,500 trades and turnover of €2.05 billion per day, trading in shares underwent a customery, seasonal drop. If compared with August 2002, turnover improved by 15.2% while the number of contracts traded dropped by 6.3%.
In the period January-August, the daily average for contracts traded was 146,600 and for turnover €2.65 billion (-4.0% and +7.5% respectively on the corresponding period last year). In detail, the daily average was of 112,900 contracts and €1.99 billion for shares listed on the Borsa and 11,400 contracts and €53.6 million for those on the Nuovo Mercato (+53.8% and +74.2% with respect to July). The sharp growth in shares traded on the Nuovo Mercato, particularly in the second half of the month, meant that the daily average was at its highest level since last December.
STMicroelectronics was once again the most traded share in terms of turnover, with 18.9% of total trading, followed by Eni (10.6%) and Telecom Italia (ex-Olivetti) (7.8%).
Trading in covered warrants recorded a daily average of €31.8 million in turnover and 12,900 in number of contracts, while the daily average for the period January-August was 17,500 contracts and €36.1 million.
After hours trading was stable in comparison with the month before, with a daily average of 3,600 trades (+0.7% on July) and €21.8 million (-2.2%). The level of trading with respect to daytime was greater both in terms of number of trades (10.3%) and turnover (3.7%). In the period January-August, the daily average was 5,000 contracts and €26.4 million.
In August, ETFs recorded their new historical high for the daily average number of contracts traded, which rose to 188; daily average turnover was €5.3 million.
With reference to trading in fixed-income securities on the Mot, for Government securities the daily average was €391 million in turnover, whereas for private bonds it was €21.8 million. In the period January-August 2003 the daily average for Government securities traded reached €505 million, whereas that for private bonds was €37.4 million. The EuroMOT recorded a daily average turnover of €9.1 million, whereas the daily average turnover for the period January-August 2003 was €15.0 million, representing an upswing of +70.1% on the corresponding period last year.
With regard to trading in equity derivatives on the Idem, the daily average for futures on the Mib30 was 10,800 contracts, and 7,500 on the miniFIB, whereas the average number of standard contracts traded in options on the Mib30 was 7,600. For stock futures the average was of 600 standard contracts per day, a hike of +134.2% on August 2002, whereas the daily average for stock options was 25,200 standard contracts (+6.2% on August 2002). In the period January-August, the Idem daily average was of 72,500 standard contracts, representing an increase of 11.1% on the corresponding period in 2002 and all the instruments, except for futures on the Mib30 (17,700 standard contracts a day, -5.4% compared to the corresponding period in 2002), recorded growth: miniFIB (11,100 standard contracts a day, +43.5%), options on the Mib30 (10,300 standard contracts a day, +11.0%), stock futures (2,200 standard contracts a day, +451.5% -this instrument has only been traded since July 2002-), stock options (31,200 standard contracts a day, +5.9%).
Milan, 8 September 2003
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