Kuwait bourse extends decline as volume ebbs Zain slips 10 fils; NIG stagnates

KUWAIT CITY, Dec 25: Kuwait stocks slumped Tuesday, extending the 3-day downswing. The index dived 36.67 pts in a broad decline led by blue chips as sentiment turned bearish. After starting off the month on strong note the market was been weighed by low liquidity even as the investors await positive catalysts to buoy the market. The KSX 15 benchmark dropped 4.64 pts to 1,014.14 points and has shed over 20 points so far during the month, while the weighted index edged 1.47 points lower to settle at 418.36 pts. The volume turnover meanwhile shrank after chalking an uptick in the previous session. 215.92 million shares changed hands — down 13.18 percent from Monday. KSE had rallied over 3 percent in November helped by a pre-election rally.

The sectors closed mostly in the red. Insurance outshone the rest with 1.54 percent rise whereas parallel market dropped 1.47 percent, the biggest loser of the day. Volume wise, financial services topped with 53.09 percent market share while real estate and banks followed with 16.21 percent and 13.92 pct respectively. Gulf Glass Manufacturing Co slid 40 fils to KD 0.660 and Combined Group Contracting Co shed 20 fils. Gulf Cables dropped 20 fils to KD 1.220 after stagnating in the previous session. Kuwait Pipes edged 2 fils lower. Bourse heavyweight Zain fell 10 fils to KD 0.800 after trading 3.4 million shares and Wataniya Telecom was unchanged at KD 2.320 off early lows. Agility was down 10 fils at KD 0.510 with a volume of 0.49 million shares. The stock has shed 135 fils from start of the year. Burgan Well Drilling Co slipped 10 fils to KD 0.192 and Safwan Trading and Contracting Co clipped 20 fils to wind up at KD 0.500. ALAFCO was down 10 fils at KD 0.345. The company has posted a net profit of KD 25.63 million and earnings per share of 32.88 fils in the year ended 30/9/2012 and the Board of Directors has recommended a dividend payout of 5 percent or 5 fils per share.

The market opened flat but slipped into red in early trading. The index continued to erode as selling weighed on select counters and bottomed at 5,901.79 pts in the final minutes. It however managed to claw back some of the losses at close. Top gainer of the day, Ahli Insurance Co spiked 10 percent to KD 0.550 and Kuwait Cable Vision Co climbed 7.69 percent to stand next. Safat Real Estate Co tumbled 10.42 percent, the steepest decliner of the day, and Securities House Co topped the volume with 21.187 million shares.
The market spread was heavily skewed towards the losers. 25 stocks advanced whereas 75 closed lower. Of the 139 counters active on Tuesday, 39 closed flat. “The market is totally driven by retails, with no fundamental reasons (for a sell-off),” Reuters quoted Fouad Darwish, head of brokerage at Global Investment House.
“We don’t see any support from government buying in the last few days and that’s making some people nervous.Kuwaiti investors tend to sell out of profitable positions ahead of holidays to book spending cash,” he added.

On the upside, Egypt Kuwiat Holding Co climbed 15 fils to KD 0.335 on back of 2.18 million shares and National Indsutries Co added 20 fils. Contracting and Marine Services Co gained 8 fils with thin trading whereas National Industries Group held the ground unchanged at KD 0.214. The counter saw 1.94 million shares change hands.
In the banking sector, National Bank of Kuwait was unchanged at KD 0.970 with a volume of 1.89 million shares and Gulf Bank pulled 10 fils lower. The stock has shed 25 fils from start of the month while year-to-date, it has retreated 105 fils.
Ahli United Bank stagnated at KD 0.840 off early highs and Commercial Bank of Kuwait too held steady at KD 0.680 . The Moody’s has lowered bank’s credit rating from BAA3 to BA. Kuwait International Bank was flat at KD 0.300 after trading 4.78 million shares.
Burgan Bank and Kuwait Finance House were unchanged at KD 0.530 and KD 0.830 respectively whereas Al Ahli Bank shed 10 fils. The lender has won approval of Kuwait Central Bank to extend the approval to buy back or sell up to 10% of its issued shares for 6 months ending on June 12, 2013. Boubyan Bank ended flat at KD 0.650.

International Financial Advisers fell 1 fils to 45 fils with a volume of 11.33 million shares and National Investment Co inched 2 fils lower. The company has earned KD 5.65 million and 6 fils EPS in the January-September period, surging 348.4 percent from KD 1.26 million and 1 fils earnings per share in the year-earlier period. Securities Group Co shed 6 fils and KIPCO was flat at KD 0.395. Kuwait Financial Centre stagnated at KD 0.122. The company has earned KD 2.81 million in profit during the first nine months of 2012, marking a 392 percent year-on-year increase, while the third quarter profit surged 197.7 percent year-on-year to KD 1.67 million.
First Investment Co slipped 2 fils to KD 0.122 and Bayan Investment inched 0.5 fils lower. IFA Hotels and Resorts Co held the ground steady at KD 0.440. The company has posted KD 4 million loss and earnings per share of 9.37 fils per share in the 9-month period ending September 2012, a 342% jump in losses from same period in 2011.
Kuwait Portland Cement Co and Kuwait Foundry Co closed flat at KD 1.060 and KD 0.270 respectively and Kuwait Food Co too followed suit. The company has recorded KD 31.31 million profit in the 9-month period ending September 2012 while in the third quarter, it earned KD 6.27 million.

The bourse has been downbeat so far during the week and has tumbled 61.23 pts in last three sessions. The index has slid 21.86 points from start of the month and is trading 2.25 percent higher year-to-date. KSE, with 213 listed companies, is the second largest bourse in the region.
In the bourse related news, Global Investment House has chalked a net loss of KD 35.46 million and loss per share of 72 fils in the first nine months of 2012 as against loss of KD 54.22 million and LPS of 110 fils in the same period last year. Kuwait Real Estate has registered a net profit KD 1.733 million and EPS of 1.91 fils in the January-Sept period as against earnings of KD 877,467 and earnings per share of 0.97 fils in the same period last year.
Meanwhile KSE has reviewed the KSX 15 Index following which Ahli United Bank, Boubyan Petrochemical Company, and Qurain Chemical Industries Company were replaced by Wataniya Telecom Co, Al Ahli Bank of Kuwait and Kuwait Food Company (Americana).
ALAFCO Aviation Lease and Finance Company, Boubyan Petrochemical Company, and Gulf Cable & Electrical Industries Co will be added to the reserve list of companies list for the next review.


By: John Mathews

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