Executives of Midland Realty, Landsea and Elec & Eltek disclose rare buy-backs of own stocks

Transactions by company insiders rose for the fourth consecutive week in Hong Kong

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 07 January, 2018, 1:14pm
UPDATED : Sunday, 07 January, 2018, 10:29pm

The chairmen of Midland Realty, Landsea Green Properties and Elec & Eltek International disclosed rare buy-backs last week during the holiday shortened trading period, according to disclosures to the Hong Kong stock exchange.

The buy-backs came as transactions by company insiders rose for the fourth consecutive week in Hong Kong. Up to 48 companies disclosed 207 purchases worth HK$173 million (US$22 million) while 16 companies reported 64 disposals valued at HK$131 million.

Midland’s chairman Freddie Wong Kin-yip bought nearly 6 million shares of his company between December 27 and January 4 at an average price of HK$2.38 per share, raising his holdings to 27.71 per cent.

The company issued a positive profit alert on December 22, citing rising property transactions, growth in its market share and effective cost controls. Midland had swung to an interim profit of HK$115.67 million in the first six months of last year, from a loss of HK$137.07 million in 2016.

The stock closed at HK$2.40 on Friday. Wong’s purchases were his third since January 2014, when he paid an average of HK$4.68 per share for 90.56 million shares.

Significant Points:

  • Wong’s purchases accounted for 46 per cent of the stock’s trading volume during the transaction period.
  • Wong bought his stock after its price rebound by as much as 23 per cent from HK$2.00 on December 6.

Landsea’s founder and chairman, Tian Ming, raised his stake in the property developer and financial services provider to 77.1 per cent, surpassing the 75 per cent ownership limit stipulated under exchange regulations. He had bought 6.156 million Landsea shares at an average price of 83 HK cents on January 2 and 3. He bought 3.17 million Landsea shares last July at 70 HK cents each. The stock closed last Friday at 84 HK cents.

Significant Points:

  • Tian’s purchases were his first on-market trades since July 2017, accounting for 43 per cent of trading volume during his transaction dates.
  • The purchases were made after the stock fell by as much as 16 per cent from 98 HK cents in August 2017.

Elec & Eltek International’s chairman and non-executive director Cheung Kwok-wing raised his stake in the printed circuit board manufacturer to 0.83 per cent, after buying 40,000 shares at HK$12.60 each. He had previously bought shares of the company in 2011 at an average price of HK$24.71 each. The company’s third-quarter profit soared 264.5 per cent to US$24.812 million. The stock closed at HK$13.40 on Friday.

Significant Points:

  • The recent purchase by Cheung was his first on-market trade since September 2011
  • The recent purchase was made on the back of the 157 per cent rebound in the share price since February 2016 from HK$4.91

Chuang’s Consortium International, a property investor and developer, bought back its own shares for the third time since December 1994, purchasing 1.2 million shares at an average price of HK$1.84 from January 2 to 4. The stock advanced to HK$1.88 on Friday.

Chairman Alan Chuang Shaw-swee bought 23 million shares of his own company from July 10 to December 22 at an average price of HK$1.80. The company’s interim profit rose 21.2 per cent to HK$537.978 million.

Significant points:

  • The buy-backs were the first repurchase by Chuang’s Consortium since September 2016, making up 31 per cent of the stock’s trading volume during the purchase period.
  • The stock had risen 27 per cent since December 2016, from HK$1.45

The total number of companies and trades on the buying side in Hong Kong were consistent with the previous week’s three-day totals of 36 firms and 188 purchases. The buy value, however, was sharply down from the previous week’s acquisitions worth HK$255 million. The sales, on the other hand, were sharply up from the previous week’s eight companies, 27 disposals and HK$89 million.

Meanwhile, buy-back activity was flat with 22 companies posting 64 repurchases worth HK$98 million, based on filings from December 29 to January 5. The number of firms and trades was not far off from the previous week’s 19 companies and 69 repurchases. The value, however, was sharply down from the previous week’s HK$306 million.