Kuwaiti stocks dip as government vows sweeping reforms
The Kuwait Stock Exchange (KSE) closed the week yesterday 1.4 percent down, having rebounded from five-year lows on the back of government pledges to implement sweeping reforms on the bourse.
The KSE index closed at 1,349.9 points, down 6.4 percent on the end of 1999 and a massive 52.4 percent on its all-time high in November 1997. An increase of 4.4 points on Wednesday, the last trading day of the week, ended five days of losses.
The rise followed Trade Minister Abdel Wahab al-Wazzan's statements late Tuesday that regulations for a law allowing foreigners to buy stocks and trade on KSE would be issued within the next few weeks.
Wazzan added that foreign financial establishments would be allowed to set up mutual funds to trade in stocks on the bourse.
"We have to offer new investment tools like options, portfolios, mutual funds and (expand) forward-dated deals. This would expand the base of KSE," Wazzan said. "We must (also) take into consideration the secondary market."
Kuwait closed its secondary stocks market after a major crash in 1982, which cost the oil-rich emirate tens of billions of dollars.
© Agence France Presse 2000
© 2000 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)