By Satish Kanady
DOHA: Qatar bourse, after closing a record monthly low in June, racked up one of its biggest single-day gain yesterday. The market made a strong start to the second half of the year as the main index skyrocketed to 5.62 percent, the biggest single-day jump in five years, to finish at 12,134.
The heaviest trading day saw over 20 million shares changing hands. Market cap jumped by QR34bn to cross QR666bn.
Analysts differed on the reasons behind the sizeable rally.
The surge was because of heavy selling during the past few weeks. Eager investors were drawn into the market by exceptionally low prices prevailing, said one section of analysts.
Others believe the Advisory Council’s decision to approve draft law on tax exemption for foreign investors fired up the market. “The sudden surge is quite unexplainable ...”, commented another market expert.
“It seems investors were holding their breath. The market slid by 3,000 points during the past two weeks. Everybody was asking whether it is the best time to buy. Now traders found prices much lower than expected and they took the plunge”, market analyst Bashir Yousef Kahloud commented.
The market witnessed, though slow, but steady pull back after reports of Advisory Council shooting down an official panel’s decision to exempt foreigners trading in Qatari stocks from tax on capital gains.
Today’s reports that Advisory Council revoked its decision and approved the draft law on the tax exemption have boosted the sentiments, a top market expert told The Peninsula.
However, the day’s equity trading summary data illustrates foreign institutional buyers continued to remain moribund and the market boost was mainly driven by local retail investors.
Real estate, telecoms and bank sector indices galloped. Real estate jumped 7.26 percent with Ezdan surging 9.97 percent and Barwa climbing 7.04 percent. The telecom sector that saw non-stop selling for the past few trading sessions jumped 6.22 percent. Vodafone pushed up to 10 percent and Ooredoo gained 5.13 percent.
The entire 12 banking stocks were in green territory. Rayan was the top gainer adding 9.89 percent. Banking major QNB was up 6.67 percent. QIB edged 6.33 percent up and International Islamic added 7.53 percent.
Companies are expected to report their second-quarter earnings in the coming weeks. Ooredoo has announced to disclose its semi-annual financial results on July 23. Rayan and Al Khaleej will announce their results in the third week of this month. Vodafone’s first quarter results will be announced on July 22. Investors are bullish on most of these stocks.”People expect Qatar’s banks and real estate companies to outperform the first quarter,” Reuters quoted Fouad Darwish, head of brokerage services at Global Investment House in Kuwait as saying.