BUX down in final trades


The Budapest Stock Exchangeʼs main BUX index finished down 0.26% at 22,554.03 Monday after shooting up 1.30% Thursday, before the Labour Day recess on Friday. It is up 35.59% from year-end, after losing 10.40% last year. Over the last, holiday-shortened, week it rose 0.86% after soaring 5.13% over the previous week.

After healthy rises throughout the day, the BUX turned south in light profit-taking in the very final seconds of trade.

Central European manufacturing growth slowed in April reflecting a similar weakening in the euro zone, surveys showed on Monday, but analysts said it was not enough to undermine a positive growth outlook for the region.

Hungaryʼs government has raised its projection for GDP growth this year to 3.1% from 2.5% late on Thursday, with the new target coming in slightly higher than most independent forecasts.

Remarks of OTPʼs head that Hungarian banks might have to wait years before they see any compensation in the form of tax breaks for bailing out clients of failed brokerage Quaestor, did not hurt the share as it was no surprise, while other factors helped, including his other remark that OTP was preparing the purchase of a small bank in a market where it is already present, and a report by Reuters saying several banks in Hungary were working on selling non-performing commercial real estate loans worth hundreds of millions of euros in the coming months.

In total Hungarian banks hold around HUF 800 bln worth of such loans, which are weighing on their balance sheets and inhibiting fresh lending.

The Hungarian central bank launched a vehicle of its own, MARK Group, to buy such distressed assets from the banks but has yet to do so and there are signs that yield-hungry foreign investors instead might step in now that market conditions are improving, Reuters said.

Until profit-taking set in, MOL continued to gain on rising oil and fuel prices, while Magyar Telekom accelerated recovery on its week-end announcement of price hikes from July 1.

Richter was subdued ahead of the publication of its first-quarter results expected this week.

OTP won 0.43 % to HUF 6,031, the highest since June 1, 2011, on turnover of HUF 5.85 bln from a HUF 10.54 bln session total, in line with the daily average this year.

MOL lost 0.30% to HUF 15,005 on turnover of HUF 2.00 bln.

Magyar Telekom added 0.99% to HUF 409 on turnover of HUF 123 mln.

Richter retreated 2.00% to HUF 4,470 on turnover of HUF 2.46 bln.

The bourseʼs mid-cap BUMIX went out 1.21% higher at 1,632.25.

Elsewhere in the region, WIG 20 in Warsaw was up 0.34%, while Pragueʼs PX raked up 0.29%. Western Europeʼs major indices were up ahead of their close Monday, DAX30 in Frankfurt 1.44%, and CAC40 in Paris 0.83%, with London closed for the Early May Bank Holiday.

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