The Ghana Stock Exchange's performance in the last week was quite impressive. Activity on the trading floor measured in terms of quantity traded and price movements improved.
Volumes traded within the week increased by 31.4% to 11,028,400. Eleven equities made price advancements during the week resulting in the appreciation of the GSE All-Share Index by 49.65 points (0.709%) to close the week at 7,054.94 translating in a year-to-date gain of 6.90%.
Ayrton Drug Manufacturing Company made the highest price appreciation during the week under review. The pharmaceutical company advanced by GH¢0.02 (15.38%) to end the week at GH¢0.15 per share. Presently ARYTN has made a 53.37% year-to-date gain second to CAL Bank which made 58.37% on the Ghanaian Bourse. The stock's active performance and price appreciations in the past weeks seem to indicate renewed investor confidence in ARYTN. The 45% improvement in net operating profit over 2006 announced by the company appears to be well accepted by investors and that seems to fuel the improved performance of the stock. A total of 99,400 shares were traded last week.
Enterprise Insurance Company saw its share price appreciate by GH¢0.08 (4.73%) to close the week at GH¢1.77 per share and traded 9,100 shares on the exchange. The insurance company registered a marked appreciation in its year-to-date gain to close the past week at 36.15%. The company announced a 67.31% growth in its underwriting profit at the end of year 2007 to GH¢4,668,000 compared to GH¢2,790,000 which was achieved the previous year. Meanwhile, transfers made to the company's Life Fund (a subsidiary) also increased by almost 83%; from GH¢1,740,000 to GH¢3,183,000 for the year under review. None-the-less bottom line profit was up by 20.4% to GH¢2,192,000. The insurer's shares remains a prime stock on investors list and has the potential to record further price gains.
CAL Bank shares had 313,300 of its shares traded during the week with the price unchanged at GH¢0.70 per share. The Bank's stock remained the highest price gainer at 58.37% from January to-date. Due to the sharp increase in the share price a couple of weeks ago, investors who were content with the considerable price gains made in the past fifteen months seemed to be taking profits.
In its recent end of year financial results, the bank recorded a 48% increment in operating income with a corresponding 58% in total operating expense. CAL declared GH¢6,397 as profit after tax, a 36% increase over the same period in 2006. Meanwhile the Bank announced a final dividend of GH¢0.0105 per share to be paid on 30th April, 2008 with ex-dividend date of 17th March 2008.
HFC Bank was the most active stock for the period under review. A total of 7,503,500 shares traded accounting for 46.9% of the total market volume. The shares price was stable at GH¢0.54 per share with a year-to-date gain of 0.04%.
Ghana Commercial Bank (GCB) the nation's largest bank was the second most traded stock on the Ghanaian Bourse during the past week. A total of 2,075,600 GCB shares were exchanged at GH¢1.16 per share.
The bank which has about 133 branches across the country has recorded a year-to-date gain of 16.58%. This stock is considered one of the best performing stocks on the Ghanaian market this year and continues to enjoy investor goodwill.