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phoebe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-09-06 06:09 PM
Response to Original message
5. here's another article on same protest
Edited on Thu Mar-09-06 06:16 PM by phoebe

Kuwait bourse in free fall

By B Izzak

KUWAIT: Some 300 Kuwaiti investors staged a protest at the main gate of the Kuwait Stock Exchange yesterday after the index made its biggest loss in a day, sliding at one stage by about 450 points or four per cent. Following the protest, the index rebounded slightly, gaining about 200 points to close down by 257.8 points at 10,705 points. The index has so far lost 6.5 per cent from its last week's close of 11,445.50 points and as high as 11.2 per cent on its all-time record of 12,054.70 points set on February 7. The Index has not gained since February 21.
"This is a crash being driven by big players. The government must intervene to stop these people from playing in the market," investor Mohammad Al-Dossari told Kuwait Times. "Everything is fine in Kuwait. We have a good economy, oil prices are high and we have new oil and gas discoveries and the bourse drops. We don't understand the reason," he said. Dawood Al-Mane said he lost some KD 40,000 in the past few days, which is one-third of his investments. "The government must intervene. Mutual funds and the Kuwait Investment Authority must also start to buy to lift the market," he said. Abdulkareem Karam alleged the whole issue was deliberate. "The whole issue is rigged by big investors and some officials. There is big foul play in the market by big speculators," Karam said.


Market authorities also saw things differently. Head of the Kuwait Stock Exchange's Technical Office, Wafaa Al-Rashid, said that what was going on in the share market was normal. She added the sharp fall did not come as a surprise because the share price hike was artificial and not real. "What is going on now in the market (sharp drop) is a "technical market adjustment," she said. Al-Rashid blamed the fall on several factors, "specifically political ones." She cited some factors as the security deterioration in Iraq and the Iran-US crisis, which have caused insecurity in oil markets. This insecurity reflected upon the share markets.
But investors were smarting. "I have lost 60 per cent of my capital in a month and a half," said protester Riyadh Al-Nasser, 42. "The government has to intervene (by investing its) funds and portfolios," he said. "Leading stock holders are selling for profit-taking after they had bought at cheap prices. They are badly hurting us, the small investors," investor Mohammed Yussef said. "This is robbery. I have lost today some 20,000 dinars ($70,000). This is unfair. Major cartels are playing with the bourse for political reasons," said Ibrahim Al-Fadhli.
"Two major factors are dampening the market. Firstly, many Saudi investors have sold their holdings and, secondly, dividends distributed by companies were consumed in raising capital and IPOs," analyst Ali Al-Nimesh told AFP yesterday. The market has also been affected by a shortage in cash supply due to Initial Public Offerings (IPOs), which drained billions of dollars, and companies preferring to distribute a portion of their dividends in shares rather than cash.
The index crossed the 11,000-point mark for the first time on October 24 and cruised above the 12,000-point on February 5, but has since been sliding. "I think the market is witnessing a snowball effect with many investors, who are basically speculating, preferring to sell rather than hold on to their stocks," Nimesh said. Average daily trading value for the week however increased 12.8 per cent to 68.9m dinars from 61.1m dinars last week. The average last year hit an all-time high of $390m compared to $208.8m in 2004. The KSE lists 161 Kuwaiti and foreign companies and has a capitalisation of more than $137bn.
The Kuwaiti bourse has been rising steadily since 2001 but picked up rapidly in 2003 after the overthrow of the regime of Saddam Hussein. The index increased 101 per cent in 2004 and 78 per cent last year. Its value has increased more than fivefold. But the market has not seen any real correction in the past three years and economists have repeatedly warned that a correction will come one day. (With Agency inputs)

and another..

KUWAIT: Kuwait Stock Exchange struggled yesterday with the Global General Index hit hard, and reaching its lowest level since mid-October 2005. The market fell for the eighth consecutive day.
All sectors plunged yesterday keeping the broader market from making any headway. By session's end, the Global General Index (GGI) (down 5.44 points to 300.68 points) lost 1.78 per cent in the day, 5.78 per cent in the week. The market benchmark, KSE Price Index (down 257.8 points to 10,705 points) too lost 2.35 per cent. The benchmark has dropped 1,349 points (11.19 per cent) since breaching the 12,000-point-mark on 05-02-2006.
After so much selling, there is the potential for the market to see bounces here and there in the weeks ahead. While on the longer term, the market outlook remains positive, stocks are probably not going to be able to rise much beyond recent highs. In general, the sentiment is very negative right now. Investors see little reason to put money to work at the moment.
Losses were steady throughout the session. Shares of Public Warehousing Co succumbed to the selling pressure early on, providing the catalyst for investors to bail out of blue chips and eventually all sectors. The Global Large Cap Index recoiled by 0.84 per cent in the day. On the Kuwait Stock Exchange board, 166.15mn shares were traded, with declining stocks outnumbering advancing stocks by an 95 to 14 margin.

and more..

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