Mideast stocks rise as IPO boosts Egypt

A trader works at the Egyptian stock exchange in Cairo. (File photo/Reuters)
Updated 24 November 2017
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Mideast stocks rise as IPO boosts Egypt

DUBAI: Almost all Middle East stock markets rose on Thursday as a plan for an initial public offering (IPO) boosted Egypt while blue-chip Emaar Properties continued to recover in Dubai.
Ibn Sina Pharmaceutical Industry, one of Egypt’s largest drug distributors, plans to raise as much as 1.6 billion Egyptian pounds ($90.7 million) by offering nearly 40 percent of its shares in December, an official at underwriter Beltone Financial said. The regulator has approved the company’s prospectus, the official said.
The offer is expected to kick off a series of about half a dozen Egyptian IPOs by the end of next year, which could increase trading volumes and attract foreign investment.
The Egyptian index rose 1.9 percent, with real estate developer Palm Hills up 4 percent.
El Sewedy Electric jumped 10 percent to a record high of 130.50 pounds in heavy trade after Naeem Research, increasing its earnings forecasts for the company, raised its target price to 130.1 pounds from 77.2 pounds. GB Auto also gained 10 percent.
In Dubai, the index climbed 0.5 percent as Emaar Properties added 0.8 percent to 7.86 dirhams, extending a recovery from technical support at 7.60 dirhams. The stock had slipped ahead of Wednesday’s listing of Emaar Development because of concern over the market debut.
However, Emaar Development closed at 5.77 dirhams on Wednesday, only moderately lower than its IPO price of 6.03 dirhams. On Thursday it edged down to 5.75 dirhams. Trading volume shrank to 9.6 million shares from Wednesday’s 48.4 million, suggesting demand to exit the stock was not high.
Another beaten-down Dubai stock, amusement park operator DXB Entertainments, rebounded 4.7 percent from near record lows in heavy trade.Saudi Arabia’s index gained 0.8 percent as real estate developer Dar Al Arkan, the most heavily traded stock, added 3.6 percent. Home appliance retailer Shaker climbed by 4.7 percent.
Qatar was the only major market to fall, with the index losing 0.7 percent.
International equity index compiler MSCI said on Wednesday that it might shift to using offshore foreign exchange rates to value Qatar’s equities market because sanctions against Doha had made it more difficult for foreign investors to obtain riyals onshore.
The Qatari riyal is significantly weaker offshore than onshore so if it goes ahead, the shift could lead to changes in the weighting of Qatari stocks in MSCI’s emerging market index.
Qatar National Bank lost 1.8 percent, though Mesaieed Petrochemical jumped by 6.7 percent.


German industry groups warn US on tariffs before Trump-Juncker meeting

Updated 22 July 2018
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German industry groups warn US on tariffs before Trump-Juncker meeting

  • Washington imposed tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from the EU, Canada and Mexico on June 1
  • Trump is threatening to extend them to EU cars and car parts

BERLIN: German industry groups warned on Sunday, before European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker meets US President Donald Trump this week, that tariffs the United States has imposed or is threatening to introduce risk harming America itself.
Citing national security grounds, Washington imposed tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from the EU, Canada and Mexico on June 1 and Trump is threatening to extend them to EU cars and car parts. Juncker will discuss trade with Trump at a meeting on Wednesday.
“The tariffs under the guise of national security should be abolished,” Dieter Kempf, head of Germany’s BDI industry association said. Juncker should tell Trump that the United States would harm itself with tariffs on cars and car parts, he told Welt am Sonntag newspaper.
The German auto industry employed more than 118,000 people in the United States and 60 percent of what they produced was exported. “Europe should not let itself be blackmailed and should put in a confident appearance in the United States,” he added.
German Economy Minister Peter Altmaier told Deutschlandfunk radio on Sunday he hoped it was still possible to find a solution that was attractive to both sides. “For us, that means we stand by open markets and low tariffs,” he said
He said the possibility of US tariffs on EU cars was very serious and stressed that reductions in international tariffs in the last 40 years and the opening of markets had resulted in major benefits for citizens.
EU officials have tried to lower expectations about what Juncker can achieve, and played down suggestions that he will arrive in Washington with a novel plan to restore good relations.
Altmaier said it was difficult to estimate the impact of any US car tariffs on the German economy, but added: “Tariffs on aluminum and steel had a volume of just over six billion euros. In this case we would be talking about almost ten times that.”
He said he hoped job losses could be avoided but noted that trade between Europe and the United States made up around one third of total global trade.
“You can imagine that if we go down with a cold in the German-American or European-American relationship, many others around us will get pneumonia so it’s highly risky and that’s why we need to end this conflict as quickly as possible.”
Eric Schweitzer, president of the DIHK Chambers of Commerce, told Welt am Sonntag the German economy had for decades counted on open markets and a reliable global trading system but added: “Every day German companies feel the transatlantic rift getting wider.”