Day of records at Hungarian bourse - extended


Budapest Stock Exchange (BÉT) rose by 836.9 points to a historical record of 29.441 points yesterday. Over 90% of the Ft 248 billion ($1.34 billion) traffic came from MOL Nyrt's shares, which also reached a historical peak of Ft 30000, i.e. 6% (Ft 1700), increase in stock price.

MOL (Hungary's oil giant) shares are already unrealistically expensive, but there may be further increase, analyst with Takarékbank Attila Tapaszti said. MOL management announced steps to protect the firm from a buyout, and will continue buying their own shares if Rahimkulov, owner to competitor OMV, keeps on buying MOL too. OTP reached a historical record also with a 2.97% increase in share price, making it three records in one day at the bourse.

Current price of MOL Nyrt shares increased spectacularly yesterday. While the price of MOL shares was hardly above Ft 24,000 ($130) a week ago, it closed at Ft 30,000 ($163) yesterday. Turnover at the stock exchange was great, almost 6.6% of the firm's registered capital, i.e.7.2 million shares were traded with a value of Ft 216 billion ($1.17 billion). ING was the biggest buyer, with several million shares bought just yesterday. At the same time, MOL announced in an official report that the company bought some 251,000 of its own shares for more than Ft 7 billion ($38 million) through ING's assistance on Monday. As a result, MOL's stock of own shares add up to a total 3.5 million. Apart from ING, ÁÉB and Austrian Raiffeisen bought significant stocks as well. According to market players, MOL's acquisition battle goes on, i.e. MOL keeps buying up its own shares in defense, while OMV -even if not directly- goes on building its stock of MOL shares. (Gazdasági Rádió, Napi Gazdaság, Magyar Hirlap)

Trading for MOL's shares went up five-fold on Monday and twenty-fold to $1.15 billion on Tuesday despite denials from Austria's OMV that it is seeking to merge with the Hungarian company as well as a firm statement from MOL opposing the move. OMV said in a statement that it has almost doubled its stake in MOL to 18.6%, sending the Hungarian firm's shares 5% on Tuesday. The Austrian company denied plans of a takeover and said it had raised its stake to position better for the consolidation it expects in the region's oil and gas sector. Meanwhile, MOL's management signaled once again that they were not in favor of a deal. The company declined talks on the takeover in a statement.

MOL's portfolio investors had a good chance to reap from the Hungary-Austrian conflict. Medget Rakhimkulov, Hungary's richest businessman and Gazprom's executive in the early 1990s, has sold his stake in the firm recently. Rakhimkulov's holding Kafijat Zrt and its offshore units bought some 11% in MOL in May. The firms sold slightly more than 6% in MOL to Vienna Capital Partners Unternehmensberatungs last week, MOL announced on Monday. Megdet Rakhimkulov, whose fortunate is estimated at $1.2 billion, is likely to have earned as much as $175 million on the deal. Rakhimkulov declined to explain to Kommersant his decision to sell the stake. (

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