Wary investors sell Egyptian stocks

Daily News Egypt
2 Min Read

CAIRO: The Egyptian benchmark index declined on Monday, led by selling on index heavyweights Orascom Construction Industries and Orascom Telecom with investors wary after a sharp drop last week, traders said.

Everyone s looking for an exit scenario. … There s still not enough confidence in the market for people to come back and trade regularly or put fresh money into the market, so the investors are looking for any hike in the market to sell on, said Mohamed Tawfiq of Delta Rasmala Securities.

Mobile operator Orascom Telecom, which said on Monday it would buy back up to 8.9 million GDRs or 44.9 million ordinary shares over the next 12 months, saw its shares lose 1.86 percent to last trade at LE 53.76 ($10.07), while Orascom Construction Industries shares last traded 2.26 percent lower at LE 322 per share.

The benchmark CASE 30 index lost 1.13 percent to 8,233.91 points as the two shares, which together constitute around 50 percent of the index, dipped.

Investment bank EFG-Hermes, which on Monday said it had bought a 50 percent stake in Offset Holding KSC, a brokerage unit owned by Kuwait Invest Holding Co, saw its shares gain 0.14 percent to 44 pounds per share. Commercial International Bank also saw its shares decline, last trading 2.52 percent lower at LE 47.95 pounds.

A slew of positive market results failed to reassure investors, said Karim Hosny of Pharos Securities.

The companies are fundamentally strong … but people aren t happy about Egypt socioeconomically, and the sentiment is negative and can t be turned around in one day, Hosny said, citing a statement by ratings agency Fitch that cut Egypt s ratings outlook and currency rating.

The widely watched Hermes index rose, gaining 0.12 percent to close at 724.02 points, and the broader CIBC index gained 0.98 percent to 396.86 points.

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