CAIRO: Foreigners dumped major Egyptian stocks on Tuesday, dragging the benchmark CASE 30 index down 2.2 percent to 5,608.96 points.
Non-Egyptians were net sellers by a margin of LE 87 million ($16 million), about 12 percent of total volume. Declining stocks outnumbered advances by 131 to 29.
The shares hardest hit were those with GDRs listed in London, including Orascom Construction Industries (OCI), Orascom Telecom (OT) and Ezz Steel.
There are a lot of foreigners selling and they were heavy sellers. Then there was some retail panic and everyone continued selling, said Teymour El-Derini of Beltone.
Some (foreign) funds have taken the decision to exit, and that takes time, said Hashem Ghoneim of El Nour Securities, explaining why the Egyptian market did not follow Wall Street.
OCI, the stock with the highest volume of trade, lost 6.86 percent to LE 230.02 despite a late announcement that it would continue its share buyback program.
OT, the second most heavily traded, slumped 8.53 percent to LE 31 a share, just off the year-low of LE 30 it hit on Oct. 12 during the worst of the world financial crisis.
Ezz Steel, hit by a sharp decline in the domestic price of steel for construction, dropped 9.43 percent to LE 12.10.
Ministerial attempts to reassure investors, through appearances at the Euromoney Egypt Conference on Monday and Tuesday, had no apparent effect on bearish sentiment, brokers said. Euromoney conferences never help the market, Derini said.
The widely watched Hermes index ended 1.95 percent down at 502.54 points and the broader CIBC index fell 1.22 percent to 292.93 points.