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KSE resumes decline, ends 55.06 pts lower Mabanee Co sheds 40 fils; NBK gains

Kuwait City, March 5: Kuwait stocks resumed its decline Wednesday after posting a modest rebound in the previous session. The index slumped 55.06 pts in volatile trade to close at 7476.72 pts as investors exited positions. Most of the heavyweights sagged whereas speculative buying lifted select mid and low caps. The bourse has closed lower in five of the last six sessions. The KSX 15 gauge fell over 4 pts to 1085.86 pts taking the month’s  drop to 16 pts while weighted index edged 1.93 pts lower. The volume turnover meanwhile rose for third straight session  to close above the 300 million mark for the first time during the month. 334.97 million shares changed hands - a 22.18 pct jump from Tuesday. 
The sectors closed mostly in red. Technology, the only gainer climbed over 2 percent whereas consumer services slid 2.83 pct, the biggest loser of the day. In terms of volume, financial services garnered the highest market share of 38.59 percent while  real estate followed with 36.8 percent.  Among the notable losers, Zima Holding Co dived 40 fils to KD 0.114 and United Projects Group was down by same measure. Kuwait Portland Cement and Mabanee Co too were down 40 fils each while Kout Food Group pulled 10 fils lower. 
Gulf Cables gave up 10 fils to close at KD 0.790 and  Boubyan Petrochemical Co was down by same measure. Al Rai Media Group Co shed 8 fils  and Jazeera Airways slipped 5 fils to KD 0.475. KGL Logistics  Co eased 4 fils to KD 0.168 and Munshaat Real Estate Projects Co followed suit.  Among the blue chips, Zain fell 10 fils to KD 0.620 and the counter saw 1.24 million shares change hands  while Wataniya Telecom shed 20 fils. Agility pulled 10 fils lower to KD 0.660 and is trading 30 fils lower year-to-date. 
The market opened flat and moved sideways in early trading. The index drifted lower thereafter as sentiment turned negative and hit the day’s lowest level of 7466.96 pts . It clawed back past the mid-session  to peak at 7560 pts before  plunging again in the final hour and closed with  hefty losses. Top gainer of the day, Automated Systems Co climbed 5.68 percent to KD 0.465 while Heavy Engineering and Shipbuilding Co rose 5.33 pct to stand next. Zimah skidded 25.97 percent, the steepest decliner of the day, and Al Dar National Real Estate Co topped the volume with over 42 million shares changing hands.  Reflecting the day’s downswing, the market spread was skewed towards the losers. 30 stocks advanced whereas 79 closed lower. Of the 144 counters active on Wednesday, 35 closed flat. 6832 deals worth KD 30.57 million were transacted - a 11.77 pct drop in value from the day before. “The CMA has been active in the last few months and is cracking down on insider and illegitimate trading,” Reuters quoted Fouad Abdulrahman Alhadlaq, deputy general manager at Al Dar Asset Management earlier in the week. “It has suspended a few big speculators and they can’t buy and sell in the market.” 
NICBM slipped 2 fils to KD 0.200 and Equipment Holding Co closed 4 fils lower after trading 1.55 million shares. The company has clocked a net profit of KD 2.96 million  and earnings per share of 21.74 fils in 2013 rebounding from net loss of  KD 1.56 million and loss per share of 11.50 fils last year.  ALAFCO was unchanged at KD 0.255 off early lows and Jazeera Airways flunked 5 fils. Kuwait Gulf Links inched 1 fils lower while Credit Rating and Collection Co  clipped 2 fils. Metal and Recycling Co gave up early gains to close at KD 0.132. Kuwait Cement Co was flat at KD 0.390 and Kuwait Food Co (Americana)  followed suit. The company has logged a net profit of KD 50.59 million and earnings per share of 129 fils in 2013, up from KD 45,90 million profit and 117 fils EPS in the year before. The Board of Directors has recommended a cash dividend of 85 %.
National Industries Group traded in green before closing flat at KD 0.230 and United Industries Co too did not budge from its earlier close of KD 0.164 . The company has posted a net profit of KD 28.08 million and earnings per share of 62.70 fils in the year ending Jan 31, 2013.  The Board of Directors has 
recommended a cash dividend of 25 %.  In the banking sector, National Bank of Kuwait rose 10 fils to KD 0.980 on back of 3.44 million shares whereas Gulf Bank retreated 5 fils. Commercial Bank of Kuwait vacillated in a tight range before ending steady at KD 0.750 whereas Al Ahli Bank was not traded during the session. Ahli United Bank stagnated at KD 0.720 Kuwait International Bank . The bank  has chalked a net profit of  KD 13.20 million and earnings per share of 14.15 fils in the year ending Dec 31, 2013, up from net profit of KD 13.16 million and earnings per share 14.10 fils during same period last year. Burgan Bank slipped 10 fils to KD 0.520 after trading over 3 million shares and Boubyan Bank followed suit. Kuwait Finance House paused at KD 0.840 and the stock has gained 40 fils year-to-date. Kuwait Investment Co and National Investment Co gave up 4 fils each and KIPCO bounced 20 fils on back of over 2 million shares. Securities Group and Kuwait Financial Centre took in 2 fils each whereas Bayan Investment closed flat. 
The bourse has been largely  bearish so  far during the week and has tumbled 217 pts in last four sessions.   The price index had  retreated 63  points  during whole of  February  and is down 0.23 pct year-to-date. KSE, with 213 listed companies, is the second largest bourse in the region. In the bourse related news, Strategia Investment has posted a net profit KD 3.36 million and earnings per share of 13.75 fils in 2013, rebounding sharply from KD 10,514 profit and earnings per share of  0.07 fils in the year before Kuwait Pipes Industries and Oil Services has incurred a net loss of KD 10.16 million and loss per share of 45.10 fils in the nine-month period ending 30 Sept 2013, widening from  KD 3.21 million loss and loss per share of  14.25 fils in the same period last year.  Mashaer Holding has posted a net profit of KD 3.64 million and earnings per share of  20 fils during 2013 as against KD 4.31 million profit and earnings per share of  25 fils in the year before. The Board of Directors has recommended  a cash dividend of 15 %. Real Estate Asset Management has posted a net profit of  KD 591,696 and e earnings per share of 5.69 fils in 2013 as compared to KD 673,099 profit and 6.47 fils EPS in the year before. The Board of Directors has recommended a cash dividend payout of 5 pct. 

 By John Mathews

Arab Times Staff

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