BUX plods ahead in thin trade


The Budapest Stock Exchangeʼs main BUX index finished up 0.12% at 22,615.87 Monday after rising 0.23% Friday. It is up 35.96% from year-end, after losing 10.40% last year. Over last week, it increased 0.92%. Over July, it improved by 3.13%.

 The Budapest bourse seriously lagged European peers which improved on mostly better-than-expected euro zone manufacturing PMIs from July.

Meanwhile, Hungaryʼs PMI fell to a neutral 50.0 points in July from 54.9 in June in the largest loss of points since August, 2014, showing manufacturing ground to a halt in July after expanding for 23 months in a row. Production, new orders and purchased stocks contracted.

   "Manufacturing PMI in Hungary severely disappointed. The data are consistent with our view of slowing pace of Hungarian GDP growth in the second half of the year,"  blnP Paribas commented.

   "Growth had several motors last year and one or two of them no longer help," Raiffeisen Bank added, referring to public investments that were boosted last year by EU funds, and new vehicle manufacturing capacities completed also last year.

   A second reading of May foreign trade data on Monday showed surplus grew more than estimated originally, but reminded investors that annual export growth slowed sharply for a second month, while both exports and imports calculated in euros fell for a second month in monthly comparison.

   Earlier, data from the National Bank of Hungary (MNB) showed on Friday that the corporate lending stock of Hungarian banks fell in June from the previous month on net repayments despite the central bankʼs continuing preferential Funding for Growth programme aimed at SMEs.

   The weak data are unlikely to lead to more monetary easing, analysts said, reminding that the Hungarian central bank announced an end to its rate-cutting cycle late July.

   Oil and gas company MOL was volatile throughout the day, but Magyar Telekom stood out. Magyar Telekom is expected to confirm on Wednesday that it would pay a dividend the first time in three years on this yearʼs results.

   MOL is scheduled to post second-quarter results early Wednesday, and Magyar Telekom to follow suite after market close on Wednesday.

   Richter was slow after a shot-up last week on better-than-expected results, as in one its important markets, Russia, the rouble fell to a 4 1/2-month low on Monday on weak oil prices and a policy rate cut last Friday.

   OTP rose 0.09% to HUF 5,750 on turnover of HUF 1.86 bln from a HUF 4.15 bln session total, two-fifths of the daily average this year.

   MOL slid 0.24% to HUF 14,725 on turnover of HUF 1.30 bln.

   Magyar Telekom rose 1.23% to HUF 411 on turnover of HUF 229m.

   Richter advanced 0.09% to HUF 4,500 on turnover of HUF 645 bln.

   The bourseʼs mid-cap BUMIX went out 0.24% higher at 1,683.02.

   Elsewhere in the region, WIG 20 in Warsaw was down 0.21%, while Pragueʼs PX improved by 0.92%.

   Western Europeʼs major indices were mixed ahead of their close on Monday, with FTSE100 in London down 0.25%, DAX30 in Frankfurt up 1.04%, and CAC40 in Paris up 0.55%.

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