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Kuwait stocks tread water; volume tapers Americana soars 60 fils; NBK slips

KUWAIT CITY, April 3: Kuwait stocks trod water on Thursday to end the week on a tepid note. The index edged 1.95 pts higher in choppy trade to wind up at 7,572.47 points as investors toed the sidelines in absence of any catalysts. Most of the mid and small caps trended lower whereas some of the banks eked modest to strong gains. The telecom services providers however retreated amid profit taking.
The KSX 15 benchmark inched 0.79 pts down stemming the winning streak which catapulted it to record high while weighted index ticked 1 pts higher to settle at 494.69 points. The volume turnover meanwhile tapered for the second consecutive session. 199.41 million shares changed hands — a 5.39 pct drop from Wednesday.

The sectors closed mixed. Consumer goods out led the peers with 1.49 pct gain whereas telecommunications shed 0.15 pct, the biggest loser of the day. In terms of volume, financial services clocked the highest market share of 49.62 pct while real estate and banks followed with 24.64 pct and 7.86 percent respectively.
Among the sharp movers, Kuwait Food Co (Americana) extended its gains with a 60 fils jump to KD 2.660 following the news that the company’s major share holder Kharafi Group is planning to sell its stake .
NICBM climbed 8 fils to KD 0.210 while Qurain Petrochemical Industries Co rose 15 fils on back of 4.3 million shares. Kuwait United Poultry Co gained 14 fils with thin trading volume.
Commercial Bank of Kuwait rallied 40 fils extending an identical rise in the previous session while Al Ahli Bank was up 15 fils at KD 0.465. Gulf Bank added 10 fils on back of over 1 million shares to wind up at KD 0.300.
 

Retreated
Telecom major Zain retreated 10 fils to KD 0.690 while Wataniya Telecom slid 40 fils to KD 1.840 and the stock is trading 80 fils higher year-to-date.Agility climbed 10 fils to KD 0.790 extending the gains from the previous session.
The market opened flat but pulled lower in early trade. The index see sawed and hit the day’s lowest level of 7544.54 pts half way into the session. It clawed back thereafter amid speculative buying in select counters and managed to close in the positive territory.
Top gainer of the day, Kuwait United Poultry Co soared 9.21 pct to KD 0.166 while Flex Resorts and Real Estate Co climbed 8.33 percent to stand next. Kuwait Foundry Co tumbled 7.35 percent, the steepest decliner of the day, and Privatization Holding Co topped the volume with 21.7 million shares.
 

Despite the day’s uptick, the losers outnumbered the winners. 45 stocks advanced whereas 54 closed lower. Of the 148 counters active on Thursday, 49 closed flat. 5219 deals worth KD 24.99 million were transacted — a 33 percent drop in value from the day before.  Gulf Cable was flat at KD 0.790 and Kuwait Portland Cement too did not budge from its earlier close of KD 1.380. Kuwait Cement Co rose 10 fils. The company has registered a net profit of KD 17.16 million and earnings per share of 26.14 fils in the year ending Dec 31, 2013 and the Board of Directors has recommended a cash dividend of 18%.
On the downside, IFA Hotels and Resorts Co shed 15 fils while City Group was down 10 fils at KD 0.460 with thin trading. Jazeera Airways gave up 5 fils to end at KD 0.460 and ACICO Industries followed suit.
Kuwait Gulf Links held steady at KD 0.102 off early lows and Automated Systems Co followed suit. The company has posted a net profit of KD 1.48 million and earnings per share of 37.17 fils in the year ending 2013 as against net profit of KD 4.04 million and earnings per share of 101.08 fils in the year before period.
 

ALAFCO was flat at KD 0.255 whereas Equipment Holding Co and KGL Logistics ticked 2 fils lower. Metal and Recycling Co was down 4 fils at KD 0.130.
Mabanee Co shed 20 fils whereas Ajial Real Estate and Enter paused at KD 0.218. The company has logged a net profit of KD 1.73 million and earnings per share of 9.86 fils in the year ending Dec 31, 2013, rising sharply from KD 217,832 and earnings per share of 1.24 fils in the year before.


Slipped
In the banking sectors National Bank of Kuwait slipped 10 fils to KD 0.990 with a volume of 2.89 million whereas Kuwait International Bank stagnated at KD 0300. 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.
Ahli United Bank was steady at KD 0.750 whereas Kuwait Finnace House was not traded during the day. Burgan Bank and Boubyan Bank closed flat at KD 0.580 and KD 0.500 respectively.
Kuwait Investment Co fell 4 fils to KD 0.164 and National Investment Co edged 2 fils lower. International Financial Advisors was unchanged at 70 fils with a volume 4.84 million whereas KIPCO climbed 20 fils to KD 0.790. Gulf Insurance Group shed 20 fils.
Kuwait Financial Centre and Bayan Investment Co eased 2 fils each whereas Securities Group took in 2 fils. Ekttitab Holding retreated 4 fils and Noor Financial Investment rallied 10 fils on back of 7.6 million shares.


The bourse has been mixed during the week. It closed higher in 2 of the five sessions and shed and has retreated 12 pts week-on-week. The price index had slid 120 pts during whole of March and is trading 0.28 pct higher year-to-date. KSE, with 213 listed companies, is the second largest bourse in the region. In the bourse related news, Kuwait and Middle East Finance Investment Company edged 2 fils lower. The company has logged a net profit of KD 1.160 million and earnings per share of 4.4 fils in 2013, as compared to KD 1.164 million loss and loss per share of 4.5 fils in the previous year.
Al Madar Finance and Investment has recorded a net profit of KD 3.58 million and earnings per share of 17.34 fils in 2013, rebounding from KD 7.60 million loss and loss per share of 36.73 fils in the previous year.  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 %.

By John Mathews
Arab Times Staff

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