Cyprus stocks edge higher, seen in close range

Published May 30th, 2001 - 02:00 GMT

NICOSIA, May 29 (Reuters) - Cyprus shares edged 0.96 percent higher on Tuesday, May 29, buoyed by some last-minute block trade buying in Bank of Cyprus and a new gain for hotel stocks. 

 

The benchmark index rose 1.76 points to 185.47, its intraday high, after bucking a weaker opening. The blue-chip FTSE/CySE index of 20 top stocks gained 4.52 points, or 0.61 percent, to end the session at 748.55. Turnover rose slightly to 11.14 million pounds ($16.5 million) 

 

Traders said a portfolio reshuffle into Bank of Cyprus gave the share a one-cent boost, pushing it to 2.48, with 350,881 shares changing hands. The stock earlier fell to a low of 2.43. 

 

The market has shown little reaction to Sunday's parliamentary elections, where moderate communists gained 34.7 percent of the vote in a razor thin majority over the right wing DISY party's 34.00 percent.  

 

"I don't think this signifies either approval or disapproval of the market to the results," said Marios Mavrides, an analyst at Citi Principal Investments and Cyprus College. "I call it aftermath fatigue." 

 

Brokers said the market was poised to be directionless for the next couple of months pending financial results from listed companies for the first half. Few companies issue quarterly results. 

 

"Some investor uncertainty may prevail into the summer until we see results," said broker Christos Ioannides. 

 

But the hotels index rallied 2.73 percent, pushed up by a four cent gain for Aqua Sol to 85 cents on the back of a bullish outlook for the tourism season this year. Cyprus, with a population of 700,000, gets about 2.5 million tourists annually. 

 

In the movers' stakes, 104 stocks advanced, 53 dropped and 29 were unchanged. There were 6161 deals. ($=0.671 Cyprus pounds)  

© 2001 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)

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