RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s stock indexes snapped the year-end rally to end lower after a volatile session on Wednesday, Dec. 29, as pandemic lockdowns and travel restrictions came into play.
TASI index dropped 1 percent to close at 11,199 points, while the parallel market Nomu retreated nearly 3 percent to 25,952 points.
The Kingdom announced that wearing masks and following social distancing guidelines will be mandatory in all indoor and outdoor events and activities from 07:00 a.m. on Thursday, Dec. 30.
Data by the Saudi Health Ministry revealed a total of 744 new COVID-19 cases together with one virus-related death on Dec. 29.
Along with the Saudi bourse, global and regional stock markets saw declines on Wednesday amid lingering uncertainty around the omicron strain.
In the GCC region where the Kingdom led the downturn, the UAE’s main index DFMGI dropped 0.8 percent, followed by Oman’s MSX30 which closed 0.1 percent lower.
Bourses of Qatar and Kuwait ended flat, while Abu Dhabi and Bahrain’s stock main indexes went up by 0.7 and 0.2 percent, respectively.
Apart from the Gulf, the Egyptian index EGX30 lost 0.1 percent.
As many as 4.99 million cases were newly recorded across the globe from Dec. 20 to Dec. 26, AP News reported citing a weekly report by the UN health agency. The virus is spreading at a very fast pace, hence weighing on investor sentiment.
In energy trading, Brent crude added 0.15 cents to reach $79.38 per barrel, while US WTI crude was up 0.1 cents to $76.66 per barrel as of 8:29 a.m. Saudi time.
- Gas Arabian Services Co. to list 790,000 shares on the parallel market Nomu, representing 5 percent of the company’s shares
- Alinma Bank’s board of directors recommended issuing dividends of SR795 million ($212 million) at SR0.4 per share for the second half of 2021. The bank is yet to disclose the distribution date
- Following the approval to increase capital via right issuance, the fluctuation limits for Allied Cooperative Insurance Group will be based on a share price of SR22.6 as announced on Dec. 30 by the Saudi Exchange
- Middle East Paper Co. has obtained a bank facility worth SR297 million from the Saudi British Bank, SABB, to settle existing payments and support long-term financing
- SICO Saudi REIT will payout dividends amounting to SR8.58 million – SR0.15 per share – for the year 2021. The payment will be finalized within 15 working days from the due date
- Arabian Internet and Telecommunications Co., known as solutions by stc, signed contracts worth SR156 million with Saudi Telecom Co., or stc, for centralized storage servers and internet gateway
- Batic Investments and Logistics Co. has completed the acquisition of a 35-percent stake in Saudi Smart Cities Solutions from subsidiary Arabian Company for Security and Safety Solutions
- Aseer for Trading, Tourism, and Manufacturing Co.’s board has approved on Dec. 29 to use SR92.4 million from statutory reserves to offset accumulated losses
- Saudi stock market regulator CMA has given the green light for 5 initial public offerings on Dec. 29
Dec. 30, 2021:
- End of Al Wasail Industrial IPO bidding and book-building for qualified investors
- Sahara International Petrochemical Co., or Sipchem, will start paying out dividends of SR1.09 billion – SR1.5 per share – for the second half of 2021
- Yanbu Cement Co. will start paying out dividends of SR156 million – SR1 per share – for the second half of 2021
- Dallah Healthcare Co. will start paying out dividends of SR90 million – SR1 per share – for the second half of 2021