An across-the-board-selling, particularly in realty and telecom, on Thursday landed the Qatar Stock Exchange in the negative terrain, after a three-day bullish spell, but the key index remained above the 10,100 level.
Increased net selling by Gulf institutions and substantially lower buying support from their domestic counterparts led the 20-stock Qatar Index to fall 0.41% to 10,103.35 points as global oil prices fell on rising inventories.
The market was largely gripped by strong profit-booking in the first 90 minutes, taking the index to a low of 10,080 points. Mild buying interests followed, but they were not strong enough as overall the index settled 42 points lower against the previous close.
Kamco analysts said a close above 10,000 would enhance further advance towards 10,225 although weekly relative strength index indicator is currently looking "negative".
Micro and midcap stocks saw noticeable selling pressure in the bourse, which saw weakened net buying by non-Qatari institutions and non-Qatari retail investors turn bearish.
Islamic stocks fell faster than the main index and other indices in the market, which however saw lower net selling by local and Gulf individual investors.
Trade turnover and volumes were on the decline in the bourse, where telecom, real estate and banking sectors together accounted for more than 91% of the total volumes.
Market capitalisation eroded more than QR2bn, or 0.46%, to QR537.49bn as micro, mid, large and small cap equities fell 0.89%, 0.5%, 0.22% and 0.16% respectively.
The Total Return Index shed 0.41% to 16,942.72 points, the All Share Index by 0.42% to 2,855.32 points and the Al Rayan Islamic Index by 0.43% to 4,033.53 points.
The realty sector’s index shrank 0.86%, followed by telecom (0.73), banks and financial services (0.38%), transport (0.3%), industrials (0.27%), consumer goods (0.19%) and insurance (0.02%).
About 80% of the traded stocks were in the red with major losers being Vodafone Qatar, Ezdan, Mazaya Qatar, QNB, Commercial Bank, Doha Bank, QIB, al khaliji, Qatar First Bank, Industries Qatar, Gulf International Services, Qatar Industrial Manufacturing, Mesaieed Petrochemical Holding, Ooredoo, Nakilat and Alijarah Holding; even as Masraf Al Rayan, Qatar Electricity and Water and Gulf Warehousing were among the gainers.
The GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) funds’ net selling strengthened to QR4.8mn compared to QR3.21mn on Wednesday.
Domestic institutions’ net buying weakened considerably to QR7.84mn against QR27.55mn the previous day.
Non-Qatari retail investors turned net sellers to the tune of QR1.76mn compared with net buyers of QR0.29mn on May 17.
However, local retail investors’ net profit-booking weakened substantially to QR3.82mn against QR29.2mn on Wednesday.
Non-Qatari institutions’ net buying also declined perceptibly to QR4.97mn compared to QR9.27mn the previous day.
The GCC individual investors’ net profit-booking fell to QR2.41mn against QR4.68mn on Wednesday.
Total trade volumes fell 8% to 8.61mn shares, value by 23% to QR174.55mn and deals by 14% to 2,258.
The banks and financial services sector saw a 62% plunge in trade volume to 1.74mn equities, 51% in value to QR55.93mn and 28% in transactions to 879.
The consumer goods sector’s trade volume plummeted 48% to 0.16mn stocks, value by 49% to QR6.14mn and deals by 49% to 167.
There was a 44% shrinkage in the insurance sector’s trade volume to 0.1mn shares, 47% in value to QR6.64mn and 26% in transactions to 34.
The industrials sector’s trade volume tanked 27% to 0.24mn equities, value by 23% to QR14.58mn and deals by 9% to 296.
However, the telecom sector’s trade volume more than doubled to 4.03mn stocks, value soared 62% to QR39.66mn and transactions by 78% to 497.
The transport sector reported a 63% surge in trade volume to 0.26mn shares and 16% in value to QR6.68mn but on a 6% fall in deals to 150.
The real estate sector’s trade volume expanded 16% to 2.08mn equities and value by 19% to QR44.93mn, whereas transactions shrank 14% to 235.
In the debt market, there was no trading of treasury bills and government bonds.