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Business News of Wednesday, 9 February 2005

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GSE All-Share Index Down

The GSE-All Share Index was down 54.14 points to close at 6,847.22 points with the year-to-date gain dipping to 0.72%. Two equities appreciated, two dropped and the rest remained unchanged.

The two gainers both made very modest gains. BOPP was the top gainer with 0.6% increase to close at ?6,705 per share with 17,800 shares trading. GCB was 0.2% up, to close at ?12,220 with 103,500 shares traded. Both stocks have benefited from a steady increase in demand and a favourable outlook.

In contrast the decliners fell quite considerably. Aluworks dropped 20.0% to end the week's trading at ?8,000 a share with 27,600 shares exchanging hands. ALW has been under immense selling pressure for the past seven months and appears to have finally yielded.

The Aluminium processing company announced an increase of 23% in turnover for 3Q04 over 3Q03 and a drop in net profit by 24% to ?14.4b for 3Q04 from ?19b for the corresponding period in 2003.

Earnings per share also declined by 14% over 3Q03 to ?346 in 3Q04. ALW suffered a disruption in metal supplies coupled with an increase of 11% in operating costs during the recent year.

Notwithstanding these difficulties, ALW paid an interim divided of ?150 a share for the period to December 2004.

The other decliner, BAT, dipped for the second week in a row as a result of heavy selling pressure. The stock closed 15.4% down to ?5,500 per share with 5,400 shares traded.

SPL recorded the highest volume traded for the week.

With the price stable at ?750 a share for the past two weeks, 387,000 shares of the pharmaceutical changed hands during the week under review. Ghana Breweries traded 244,300 shares at the price unchanged at ?1,600 a share.

GBL is at the verge of delisting after merging with Guinness Ghana under a new corporate name Guinness Ghana Breweries.

During the week PZ, announced an increase of 21% in turnover from ?78b to ?94.4b for 1H04 (period ending 30th Nov 04). Net profit however, declined by 17% to ?5b for 1H04 from ?6.1b for 1H03, with earnings per share dropping from ?219.26 to ?180.19 for 1H04.

Clydestone, the IT company, recorded ?12.5b in turnover for FY04, from ?8.9b for FY03, an impressive improvement of 41%. Net profit went by 78% to ?1.2b for the FY04 with earning per share going up by 278% to ?36.49 from ?9.65 for FY03.