Egypt’s main index slipped 0.5 percent as two of its heavyweights, Orascom Construction Industries (OCI) and Commercial International Bank (CIB) traded ex-dividend.
OCI declined 0.5 percent and CIB fell 1.5 percent.
“The market was in the red with both CIB, OCI ex-div today. So they didn’t actually get hit that hard,” said Teymour el-Derini of Naeem brokerage.
“Today the market is witnessing some profit taking with low volumes, buying coming on some stocks like EFG-Hermes, Orascom Construction Industries and El Sewedy,” he said.
El Sewedy Cables rose 1.6 percent, while investment bank EFG-Hermes ended nearly flat.
“El Sewedy is very illiquid on most days, so when a buyer appears, the stock rallies at least a percent to 2 percent. Today there are more than two interested buyers,” said Derini.
Ezz Steel rose 1.9 percent on its announcement earlier this week that it is reopening its Ezz Flat Steel plant in Suez.
Derini said trade is likely to move sideways in the shortened Easter trading week as Sunday and Monday are official holidays in Egypt.
Investors are awaiting a catalyst and improved volumes, he said, adding he recommends defensive stocks.
Overall, the index closed at 6,821 points.