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Egypt stocks hit 3-year high as Morsi trial passes calmly

Hopes of an economic revival were spurred by strong trading Wednesday, with Egypt's main index rallying amid general calm and an absence of feared violence

Ahram Online, Wednesday 6 Nov 2013
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Egypt's stocks hit a whopping rise Wednesday as the country's streets remained calm, contrary to expectations of violence in the wake of the opening of the trial of ousted Islamist president Mohamed Morsi on Monday.

"All investors, whether foreign or domestic, were watching Morsi's supporters' reaction, and since it was relatively calm, they intended to make money," said Eissa Fathy, vice head of the securities division at the Cairo Chamber of Commerce.

Morsi was transferred to a maximum security prison in a remote desert area near Alexandria, Egypt's second largest city, after his trial was adjourned to 8 January. Monday marked Morsi's first appearance since his 3 July ouster. Between then and Monday's trial session Morsi had been held at a secret military facility.

Wednesday, Egypt's main EGX30 index reached its highest level in three years, according to Fathy, rising 2.3 percent to reach 6,370 points.

The daily turnover of listed securities was also the highest since January, reaching some LE941.7 million.

The broader EGX70 index gained 2.8 percent in a session that saw 145 stocks up out of 185 listed shares.

Market bellwethers Commercial International Bank (CIB) and Global Telecom rose three and 2.5 percent respectively, while Ezz Steel, the Middle East and North Africa's largest steel company, increased its share value by 3.7 percent.

"Blue chip shares saw gains due to foreign investors' high activity in today's session," Fathy told Ahram Online.

Foreigners ended Wednesday's trading as net buyers with some LE33 million, while Egyptians largely took profits, selling some LE7.1 million.

Juhayna Food Industries rose six percent after it reported a 28 percent increase in net profit for the first nine months of 2013.

Juhayna's net profit rose to LE308.2 million in the period through 30 September, with revenue rising to LE2.49 billion from LE2.11 billion a year earlier, the group said in a statement Monday.

Real estate developers continued their strong performance, led by Talaat Mustafa Group and Palm Hills Development that rose by two percent per each.

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