Hariri factor pushes Lebanon market up nearly 10 percent
Ex-prime minister Rafiq Hariri's electoral victory fired Lebanon's stock market to a 9.9 percent gain on the week, far outshining other Arab indexes, Bakheet Financial Advisors reported Saturday.
Investor optimism after the vote was behind the leap, the Riyadh-based specialists said, noting that Solidere, Hariri's financial company which was in charge of reconstructing war-ravaged Beirut, represents 40 percent of the BLOM index.
The market ended the week to Friday at 676.50 points.
Egypt's Hermes was the next best performer with a 3.5 percent increase to 8,456.6 due to a surge in the telcommunications sector.
The Kuwait Stock Exchange went up 1.7 percent to 1,433 strengthened by cabinet approval to allow foreigners to trade on the exchange, Bakheet said, as well as the settlement of a multi-billion-dollar bad debt scheme.
But the Palestinians' Jerusalem Index put in the week's worst performance dropping two percent to 259.99 on uncertainty over the Middle East peace process, Bakheet said.
The Muscat Securities Market fell one percent to 191.55, Jordan's Amman Stock Exchange index dropped 0.8 percent to 133.41 and the Casablanca Stock Exchange lost 0.7 percent to 730.90.
Despite record high oil prices, the Saudi NCFEI stock exchange, the largest in the Arab world, lost 0.2 percent to end the week at 2,337.87 as investors bided their time.
Markets in Tunisia, Bahrain, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates saw gains of less than one percent.
The Tunindex closed up 0.7 percent at 1,444.72, Bahrain's BSE added 0.4 percent to 1,880.51, the Commercial Bank of Qatar index put on 0.2 percent to 214 as did the UAE's National Bank of Abu Dhabi index which closed at 2,591.82.
Agence France Presse 2000.
© 2000 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)