By Santhosh V. Perumal/Business Reporter
Qatar Stock Exchange (QSE) was the second best performer among the Gulf bourses, registering robust 158 points gains, during the week, notwithstanding the stalemate at the recently concluded oil producers’ meet to discuss production freeze.
Local retail investors turned bullish and there was reduced selling pressure from domestic institutions during the week which saw Doha Bank report a net profit of QR354mn in the first quarter (Q1) of this year.
Investors’ penchant for micro and large cap equities rather lifted the market during the week which saw Milaha sign a one-year feeder pact with Muntajat (Qatar Chemical and Petrochemical Marketing and Distribution Company), to transport up to 150,000 TEUs (twenty foot equivalent units) of petrochemical exports from Qatar.
“The market has by and large discounted the euphoria over production freeze and is getting attuned to the new order in the global energy front,” an analyst said.
The 20-stock Qatar Index rose 1.54% during the week which saw Nakilat report an 8% growth in net profit to QR240mn in Q1, 2016.
In comparison, Abu Dhabi gained 2.25%, Saudi Arabia (1.21%), Dubai (1.04%), Muscat (0.98%) and Kuwait (0.88%); while Bahrain was down 0.1% during the week which witnessed Qatar Insurance Company record an impressive 41% growth in gross written premiums to QR2.7bn during January-March this year.
QSE is however down 0.32% year-to-date against a plunge of 7.7% in Bahrain, 4.78% in Kuwait and 4.69% in Saudi Arabia; whereas Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Muscat gained 13.74%, 7.65% and 7.6% respectively.
Opening the week weak at 10,189 points on Sunday, when the producers’ meet was held, the market then kept gaining for the remainder of the sessions despite volatility in the oil market and thus settle at 10,396 points.
The QSE was in a bullish phase mainly on buying interests in the real estate, transport and industrials counters during the week which witnessed Al Khaliji report an 8% jump in net profit to QR156.2mn in Q1, 2016.
However, there was increased net selling by non-Qatari individual investors and lower buying support from foreign institutions in the market during the week which saw trading turnover and volumes on the decline.
Islamic stocks witnessed slower gains than the conventional ones during the week which saw banking, real estate and industrials stocks constitute more than three-fourth of the trading volumes in the QSE.
The 20-stock Total Return Index gained 1.54% and All Share Index (comprising wider constituents) by 1.37% and Al Rayan Islamic Index 1.11% during the week which saw Alijarah Holding, Mazaya Qatar and Gulf International Services (GIS) dominate the trading ring in terms of volume and value.
Realty stocks shot up 5.2%, transport (2%), industrials (1.34%) and banks and financial services (0.38%); whereas insurance shrank 1.27%, telecom (0.12%) and consumer goods (0.08%) during the week.
Market capitalisation gained 1.33% or more than QR7bn to QR555.15bn with micro, large and midcap equities gaining 1.43%, 0.71% and 0.44% respectively; even as small shrank 1.16% during the week.
Large cap equities have fallen 3.73% year-to-date; whereas micro, mid and small caps gained 4.71%, 2.66% and 1.09% respectively during the week.
Seven of the nine industrials; five of the 12 banks and financial services; four of the eight consumer goods; all the three transport; and one each of the five insurers and the four real estate stocks closed higher during the week.
Major movers included Ezdan, Dlala, Qatar Industrial Manufacturing, Alijarah Holding, Aamal Company, Mesaieed Petrochemical Holding, Nakilat and QNB; even as Islamic Holding Group, Mannai Corporation, Salam International Investment, Al Khaleej Takaful and Barwa bucked the trend during the week.
Local retail investors turned net buyers to the tune of QR3.14mn compared with net sellers of QR7.75mn the previous week.
Domestic institutions’ net profit booking weakened to QR149.96mn against QR188.63mn the week ended April 14.
However, non-Qatari individual investors’ net selling increased perceptibly to QR25.68mn compared to mere QR0.04mn the previous week.
Foreign institutions’ net buying declined to QR171.64mn against QR196.39mn the week ended April 14.
Total trade volume was down 4% to 55.5mn shares, value by 5% to QR1.85bn and transactions by 3% to 27,819 during the week.
The telecom sector saw 41% plunge in trade volume to 3.68mn equities, 44% in value to QR96.98mn and 20% in deals to 3,111.
The transport sector’s trade volume plummeted 24% to 3.09mn stocks, value by 15% to QR161.01mn and transactions by 21% to 2,004.
The market witnessed 11% shrinkage in the real estate sector’s trade volume to 14.47mn shares and 1% in value to QR273.06mn but on 2% rise in deals to 4,823.
The insurance sector’s trade volume was down 5% to 0.42mn equities but value gained 8% to QR27.98mn. Transaction shrank 13% to 435.
However, the banks and financial services sector reported 14% surge in trade volume to 17.39mn stocks but on 1% fall in value to QR550.5mn. Deals were up 4% to 7,790.
The consumer goods sector’s trade volume expanded 10% to 6.63mn shares, value by 19% to QR365.39mn and transactions by 14% to 4,113.
The market witnessed 1% jump in the industrials sector’s trade volume to 9.82mn equities but on 10% decline in value to QR372.66mn and 7% in deals to 5,543.
In the debt market, there was no trading of treasury bills and government bonds during the week.
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