Mixed bag of earnings at Amman Stock Exchange

Published August 5th, 2003 - 02:00 GMT

Impatient investors on the Amman Stock Exchange (ASE) succumbed last week to the temptation of cashing in early, but were soon swayed by the influx of mid-year results. Consequently, the market turned around mid-week, causing prices to pick up again, hauling the Atlas Smaller Market Index (ASMI) to a new high of 225.70, reported Atlas Investment Group, a Jordan-based research firm. 


The Arab Bank (ARBK) asserted its position once again as it climbed three percent to 226.5 Jordanian dinars ($319.5 million) due to some institutional buying. The bank posted JD75 million in net profits for the first half of 2003, a drop of seven percent from the previous year’s levels.  


Jordan National Bank (JONB) and Jordan Investment & Finance Bank (JIFB) saw some improvement during the week, ahead of the former’s annual general assembly. JONB’s directors, who were quoted in the local press, were optimistic about recouping at least 60 percent of the funds that went missing during last year’s bank fraud case. The stock, however, was unable to sustain itself falling seven percent to JD1.03.  


Jordanian Electric Power (JOEP) was quite active this week, despite its one percent decline to JD2.45. The utility company’s profits for the first six months of 2003 are almost double those of the same period last year. Jordan Press Foundation (PRES) witnessed a similar drop as its net income remained relatively flat, increasing by JD0.4 million only. 


Specialized Investment Compounds (SPIC) and Investors & Eastern Arab for Industrial & Real Estate Investments (IEAI) continued with their rally, climbing 17 percent and 10 percent, respectively. The industrial zone holding companies have been very active lately, with more than one million SPIC shares changing hands, while IEAI saw 0.5 million of its shares trade.  


Jordan Industrial Resources (JOIR) managed to grab some of the attention as the company’s chairman announced that sales had increased by 500 percent in the first half of the year. Nevertheless, the stock could not hold its own as it retracted three percent to JD0.72. 


Jordan Steel (JOST) rose five percent to three JD despite posting flat semi-annual profits. JOST’s net income of JD2.5 million was a pleasant surprise, nonetheless, as the company’s sales fell by almost 50 percent vis-à-vis their June 2002 levels. — (menareport.com) 

© 2003 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)

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