KUWAIT CITY, Oct 18: Kuwait stocks retreated sharply on Wednesday as most of the investors remain cautious. The price index tumbled 29.64 points in a broad decline to 6,618.66 points.
The KSX-15 benchmark closed nearly flat to stand at 1,008.37 points while the weighted index fell 0.87 points. The turnover activities however inched higher to 86.5 million shares, which was 7.48 percent rise from the previous session.
The sectors were mixed during this session. Insurance outshone the rest with 0.96 percent gain while consumer services was up 0.28 percent to stand next. Financial services sank 1.11 percent to end as the weakest performing sector, while mustering the highest market share of 42.63 percent in terms of turnover activity whereas real estate and banks trailed far behind with 28.41 percent and 13.20 percent contributions respectively.
Boubyan International Industries Holding and Al-Ahleia Insurance Co surged 7.14 percent to end the day as the best performers, while Arzan Financial Group stood next with 6.43 percent rise. Argan International Real Estate Co was the worst loser , plummeting 17.50 percent in thin trading.
Munshaat Real Estate Projects Co advanced 3.62 pct and dominated the turnover chart with shares of about 10.3 million changing hands followed by Manazel Holding and Sokouk Holding.
In the individual shares, Nafais Holding jumped 30 fils to close at KD 0.540 in small trading volume, while Jazeera Airways rose 10 fils. Kuwait Financial Centre rose 6 fils, whereas Agility added 5 fils to finish at KD 0.850.
However, Humansoft Holding Co tumbled 99 fils, while Hilal Cement sank 20 fils after resuming trading. AlKout Industrial Projects Co dropped 10 fils, while Kuwait Cement Co and Kuwait Portland Cement Co gave up 7 fils and 4 fils to close at KD 0.450 and KD 0.976 respectively. ACICO Industries was down 5 fils and Mabanee Co slipped 4 fils.
The market opened on tame note and inched lower in early trade. The main index continued to drift southwards amid speculation and selling pressures, however, last hour buying helped the market trim its losses at close.
Gulf Bank rose 3 fils in heavy trade and Boubyan Bank advanced 2 fils after trading more than 1 million shares.
Burgan Bank and Warba Bank were up 1 fil each to KD 0.351 and KD 0.234 respectively. However, Al-Ahli Bank of Kuwait fell 3 fils, while Kuwait Finance House dipped 1 fil in heavy trade. National Bank of Kuwait and Commercial Bank of Kuwait fell 1 fil each. Kuwait International Bank stood pat at KD 0.254.
Ahli United Bank lost 2 fils in heavy trade. The bank reported a net profit of KD 40 million for the nine months ending on Sept 30, 2017 compared to KD 39.1 million net profit for the same period in 2016.
Reflecting on the day’s downturn, the losers took a big lead as 63 shares closed lower and 31 stocks advanced. Of the 122 counters active on Wednesday, 28 closed flat. 3,294 deals worth KD 14.0 million were transacted, a 16.34 percent rise in value from the last session.
Most shares in the real estate sector ended flat. National Real Estate Co added 0.79 pct, while Al Mudon Real Estate Co gained 1.57 pct to settle at 38.8 fils in heavy trade. Mashaer Holding Co and Tamdeen Real Estate Co did not budge from their earlier close of 77 fils and 386 fils respectively.
United Real Estate Co dived 4.19 pct and Kuwait Remal Real Estate Co was down 4.53 pct to 61.10 fils. Arkan Al-Kuwait Real Estate Co fell 2.19 pct in small trading volume whereas Al-Mazaya Holding dipped 0.88 pct.
Boubyan Petrochemicals Co and Qurain Petrochemicals Co stagnated at KD 0.670 and KD 0.330. National Industries Group eased 1fil in heavy trade while Equipment Holding Co rose 4.92 pct after trading more than 3 million shares. Credit Rating & Collection dropped 2.14 pct in small trading volume.
In the telecommunication sector, Zain advanced 1 fil on the back of 3.5 million shares. Kuwait Telecommunications Co (VIVA) fell 1 fil and National Mobile Telecommunications Co (Ooredoo) was down by the same amount to finish at KD 0.792 and KD 1.170 respectively. AAN Digital Services Co lost 0.31 pct to 31.90 fils.
Kuwait Investment Co and Commercial Facilities Co fell 2 fils, while Coast Investment & Development Co tumbled 3.3 fils in heavy trade. Kuwait Middle East Financial Investment Co dipped 2.5 fils and Al-Aman Investment Co was down 2.6 fils. Amwal International Investment Co lost 3.8 fils, whereas Egypt Kuwait Holding and GFH Financial Group fell 3 fils each to KD 0.231 and KD 0.131 respectively.
The market has been mixed during the week. The main index has closed down in two sessions and has tripped 3.64 points during the week. However, it has lost 52.97 points from the start of the month but gained 15.15 percent year-to-date. Boursa Kuwait is the second largest bourse in the region.
By Iliasu Abubakari
Arab Times Staff