Clashes in Egypt continue to hurt stock market

Published January 29th, 2013 - 03:00 GMT
Clashes in several governorates caused the Egyptian stock market to tumble yesterday
Clashes in several governorates caused the Egyptian stock market to tumble yesterday

Egyptian shares slipped further on Monday as clashes in different governorates continued for the third consecutive day.

The benchmark index EGX30 lost 1.38 per cent of its value by the end of the day, closing at 5,609 points. 

"The market held yesterday, but the perpetuation of violence and the expectations that it will continue worried investors," said Ahraf Abdel-Aziz, head of institution sales at Arabeya Online Securities. 

Egypt's stock market slipped slightly on Sunday, the first day of Egypt's working week, defying expectations it would register a record decline and falling only 0.02 per cent.  

In a speech on Sunday night, President Mohamed Morsi imposed a state of emergency in the three Suez Canal cities (Suez, Ismailia and Port Said) where clashes were the most severe, before calling on the opposition to sit down on Monday to negotiate; calls that were rejected by the main opposition groups.

Violence erupted in a number of cities on Friday during protests to mark the second anniversary of the January 25 revolution. 

In Port Said, further incidents of violence occurred on Saturday between angry protesters and security forces surrounding the Port Said General Prison after a court handed a death sentence to 21 local football fans convicted of attacking and killing opposition Ahly fans during a match, leaving dozens dead.

Dozens died in different governorates during the weekend's violence.

Almost all sectors declined on Monday. Out of 164 listed stocks on the day, 121 lost in value while only 16 gained. 

Egypt's biggest market cap, Orascom Construction industries (OCI), lost 1.52 per cent, while blue chips Telecom Egypt and Orascom Telecom Holding (OT) lost 1.28 and 0.23 per cent respectively. 

The real estate sector saw heavy losses. TMG Holding lost 2.38 per cent, Six of October Development & Investment (SODIC) lost 3.57 per cent, and El-Kahera Housing lost 1.62 per cent. 

EFG-Hermes holding company was the only share of the EGX30 that registered gains, climbing by 0.66 per cent.

Total turnover registered some LE322 million ($48 million).

"Turnover reserved the same levels of the last few weeks. It has soared the last few days because OCI saw heavy trade, before falling back today," said Ashraf Abdel-Aziz. 

Orascom Construction Industries (OCI), Egypt's largest listed company, successfully ended its Global Depository Receipts (GDRs) programme at the London Stock Exchange, as the company will relocate from Cairo to Amsterdam under the newly-founded construction and fertilizer company OCI NV. 

Unlike Sunday, foreigners were net sellers, recording a net flow of LE11,146 million. Egyptian and Arabs ended the session as net buyers. 

Broader indices EGX70 and EGX100 lost 2.15 and 1.84 per cent respectively. 

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