Kuwait rises to highest 
in more than a month

DUBAI — Kuwait’s benchmark stock index rose to the highest in more than a month on bets that the gauge’s decline to an eight-year low earlier this month was overdone.

By (Bloomberg)

Published: Wed 29 Aug 2012, 11:04 PM

Last updated: Tue 7 Apr 2015, 2:34 PM

Agility, the Kuwaiti storage and logistic company, and Islamic lender Boubyan Bank KSC rose the most in two weeks. National Mobile Telecommunications Co, also known as Wataniya Telecom, closed at the highest in four and a half years after parent Qatar Telecom QSC made a cash offer for all of the company it didn’t already own. The Kuwait Stock Exchange index rose 0.9 per cent to 5,839.45, its highest close since July 22. The gauge fell to its lowest in eight years on August 12. The Bloomberg GCC 200 Index was down less than one per cent.

Investors held back during Islam’s holy month of Ramadan and “now feel more comfortable buying shares that would benefit if a rebound happens,” Carlos Ribeiro, Gulf Bank KSC’s chief financial officer said by telephone. Investors are picking “particular companies in very particular industries” that will be part of a rally after the dip in the index, he said.

Repeated cabinet resignations and political disputes have slowed Kuwait’s development plans. Prime Minister Shaikh Jaber Al Mubarak Al Sabah formed a cabinet on July 19, its 10th since February 2006. Parliament failed to convene July 31 as most lawmakers boycotted the session.

Agility rose 2.4 per cent to 420 fils. The company said yesterday it won a 27-month contract from the UK Ministry of Defence that will yield revenue of $15 million.

Boubyan Bank gained 1.7 per cent to 610 fils, while Wataniya Telecom rose 0.8 per cent to 2,560 fils. Qatar Telecom, majority owned by the gas-rich country’s government, on August 16 offered to buy all of Wataniya shares that it doesn’t already own at 2,600 fils each.

Kuwait’s stocks were hurt in August by the political turmoil and on fears some companies will be suspended from trading after failing to meet an August 16 deadline to disclose quarterly results, according to Fouad Darwish, head of brokerage at Kuwait-based Global Investment House KSCC.

“People were scared and hesitant to put new money into the market but 81 companies disclosed results” in the last week and only one company was suspended, Darwish said.

Elsewhere in the Gulf region, Dubai’s DFM General Index fell 0.9 per cent to close at 1,545.40 points. Abu Dhabi’s ADX General Index dropped 0.6 per cent to close at 2,574.11 points. Oman’s MSM30 Index dropped 0.5 per cent while Bahrain’s measure rose 0.1 per cent. Qatar’s QE Index lost 0.2 per cent and Saudi Arabia’s Tadawul All Share Index was little changed.

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