Bearish trend characterizes weekly trading in Arab markets
While most Arab markets lost ground last week, the Kuwaiti stock exchange closed 1.6 percent higher at 1,600.90 points. The weekly trade ended with eight markets lower, three higher and one bourse remaining unchanged, reported AFP.
Since the beginning of the year, Kuwait’s stock exchange gained 17.6 percent in dollar terms—making it the Arab world's best performer of 2001. The KSE index passed for the first time in two years the 1,600-point psychological barrier, due to the rise in investors optimism that has lead to an influx of capital into the market.
Saudi Arabia's NCFEI index rose 0.8 percent, having closed on 2,371.70 points, mainly due to the gains of market leaders Al-Rajhi Banking and Investment Corp. and the industrial giant SABIC. Jordan’s ASE index closed on 142.23 points—0.4 percent higher.
The week’s worst performer was Lebanon’s BLOM index, having fell 4.6 percent to 501.23 points, following a 7.8 percent surge the pervious week. The drop was attributed to the losses of market leader Solidere, the real-estate company in charge of Beirut's downtown reconstruction.
In the North African region, Egypt’s Hermes Financial Index lost 3.8 percent, closing on 6,292.23 points, while Tunisia’s Tunindex and Morocco’s CSE indices lost 3.1 and 1.9 percent respectively, closing at 1,342.77 and 646.15 points.
In the Gulf region, Qatar's CBQ index fell to 239.25 points, representing a 2.2 percent drop. Oman’s MSM index lost 1.3 percent, closing on 163.77 points, having lost a total of 18.6 percent since the start of 2001. Bahrain’s BSE index merely slipped 0.2 percent to 1,718.34 points.
The Emirati NBAD index remained unchanged on 2,507.91 points. — (MENA Report)
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