Egypt stock losses slow on hope of military-brokered solution
Ahram Online, Wednesday 3 Jul 2013
Main index dips 1.7% at start of session, but losses slow to 0.32% after buyer confidence boosted by meetings between military and political factions

Egypt's main index closed down 0.32 percent on Wednesday to sit at 4,971 points as early market losses slowed throughout the session.

The main index dipped 1.7 percent at the beginning of the session in response to a Tuesday night speech by President Mohamed Morsi and bloody clashes at a protest site near Cairo University.

"The speech was threatening, and made people expect further violent clashes," Osama Mourad, an independent analyst and former chief executive of Arab Finance Brokerage, told Ahram Online.

Speaking a day after mass popular protests demanding his ouster had spurred the armed forces to announce a 48-hour ultimatum for Morsi to "meet the demands of the people," Egypt's first democratically-elected president vowed to protect his legitimacy with his life if necessary.

Hours after the speech, violence broke out near Cairo University where supporters of the president had gathered earlier, leaving 16 dead and at least 200 injured.

But buyers made a comeback as the session progressed, "and especially after the armed forces announcement of its meeting with the different political factions" shortly before the end of the session, explained Mourad.

By session's end, total turnover was recorded at LE454 million.

Egyptian investors were the net buyers, to the tune of LE55.4 million.

Blue chip Commercial International Bank fell 2.31 percent, Orascom Telecom slid 0.48 percent and TMG Holding lost 1.17 percent.

However, the EGX 30 was buoyed by Orascom Construction Industries, Egypt's largest listed company, which gained 0.75 percent, as well as real estate heavyweight Palm Hills Development, which rose 3.98 percent, and Six of October for Development & Investment, up 5.11 percent.

The EGX 70 index, on the other hand, closed in the green, up by 1.44 percent.