CAIRO: Egypt s main index ended 1.2 percent lower, weakened by some concerns about the health of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, 81, after surgery at the weekend, traders said.
Irresponsible rumors on the president caused a sell-off by retail investors, said Osama Mourad of Arab Finance Brokerage. The rumors died out in the last hour and the market rebounded.
At about mid-session, a spokesman at the German hospital where Mubarak was recovering from his successful gallbladder surgery on Saturday said the president s condition was improving and he was moving around inside his room.
Egypt s index for smaller cap companies, popular with retail investors, lost 2.3 percent after falling by as much as 3.3 percent.
I think tomorrow will open up. But if we don t find strong buying it [will] fall down again, said Teymour El-Derini of Naeem Brokerage.
El Sewedy Cables, which said late on Monday it expected 2009 net income to decline 24 percent, fell 3.4 percent.
Construction heavyweight Orascom Construction dropped 2.8 percent, and fixed-line telephone monopoly Telecom Egypt lost 1.1 percent.
Commercial International Bank rose 1.2 percent, its third session of gains since EFG-Hermes raised its recommendation on the stock to buy from neutral.
The EGX 30 closed at 6,691 points. -Reuters