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Egypt stocks up 1.61 pct on Wednesday, investors ignore political uproar

The local bourse gained 1.65 per cent in trading Wednesday despite increasing political uncertainties as protests reach the presidential palace

Ahram Online, Wednesday 5 Dec 2012

Egyptian stocks extended their gains Wednesday amid an escalation of current political instability.

Egypt's main benchmark EGX30 gained 1.65 per cent, closing the day out at 5,073 points. The broader EGX70 index, on the other hand, witnessed a slight decrease, finishing Wednesday down 0.01 per cent.
The stock market's upward trend continued for the second consecutive day, while analysts predict continued gains until the end of the week. The stock market is surprisingly unaffected by developments in the political faceoff, contrary to the predictions of analysts.

Several opposition groups organised mass protests Tuesday against President Morsi's contentious 22 November decree, with rising fears of possible violent clashes erupting in the perimeter of the presidential palace tonight, drawing fears of possible negative repercussions on the overall performance of the economy.

"The stock market is simply ignoring the developments on the political arena, and most stocks are registering remarkable gains, despite the lack of all real incentives to invest," said Issa Fathy, vice president of the securities division in the Chamber of Commerce.

Out of 166 shares traded, 70 registered gains while 59 lost value, headed by market giants Orascom Construction Industries (OCI) and Orascom Telecom Holding (OTH) that rose by 3.5 per cent and 0.86 respectively.

Daily turnover remains very weak, standing at a mere LE283 million, seemingly unable to recover from last week's losses. Egyptian and Arab investors were heavy net sellers offloading a significant total of LE70.5 million and LE8.6 million respectively.

Foreign investors were net buyers for the day, driving the market upwards, picking up LE80 million worth of shares.

"The rise seems to be somehow 'politically' manufactured, with some foreign investors being directed to heavily buy. This tendency is expected to maintain until the end of next week," explained Fathy.

The real estate sector has largely recovered from the deep losses it witnessed in the past weeks, with Talaat Mostafa Group Holding (TMGH) rising by 1.25 per cent, and Palm Hills Development by 1.01 per cent.

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