MSX declines for second week as investors await more corporate disclosures

Business Saturday 28/January/2023 18:25 PM
MSX declines for second week as investors await more corporate disclosures

Muscat: The benchmark index of the Muscat Stock Exchange (MSX) declined last week by 47 points and closed at 4,751 points, declining for the second week in a row after losing about 81 points in the previous week.

All sectoral indices recorded a drop except for the service sector index, which rose 41 points. While the industrial sector index recorded the highest decline at 179 points, the financial sector index declined by about 140 points, and the Sharia index lost about three points.

About two weeks ago, the Muscat Stock Exchange has been witnessing cautious calm, despite the positive financial results for 2022 announced by public joint stock companies in early January, which showed an increase in profits and a decrease in losses.

The declines of the past two weeks came as investors await more corporate disclosures regarding dividends to shareholders. Until the end of last week, seven companies out of about 100 public joint-stock companies listed on the Muscat Stock Exchange announced that they will distribute dividends to shareholders, noting that the annual ordinary general assemblies that will be held next March will discuss these recommendations, and it is expected that the coming days will witness More recommendations that may reflect positively on the performance of the stock exchange.

The Oman Cables Industry Company came at the forefront of the companies that announced high dividends, as it indicated that it will distribute cash dividends of 56 baisas per share, and the Board of Directors of Bank Muscat recommended a cash dividend of 15 percent, or 15 baisas per share, while the National Bank of Oman recommended the distribution of cash dividends of 9 per cent, or 9 baisas per share. Bank Dhofar recommended a cash dividend of 4.7 per cent per share. The Gulf Mushroom Production Company said it had recommended a cash dividend of 10 per cent or 10 baisas per share.

While the Taajeer Finance Company confirmed that it recommended the distribution of cash dividends of 5 per cent and bonus shares of 2 per cent, and the Desert Hospitality Company, whose fiscal year ended last November, announced that it had recommended the distribution of cash dividends of 250 baisas per share, and the nominal value of the Desert Hospitality share is one Omani rial. Unlike most public shareholding companies, which divided their shares from one Omani rial to 100 baisas.

Last week, the Muscat Stock Exchange recorded a decline in the trading value, which fell to OMR11.31 million, compared to OMR15.85 million in the previous week, and the number of transactions executed decreased from 2,530 to 1,630 transactions. The market value fell at the end of Thursday’s trading to OMR23.57 billion, recording weekly losses estimated at OMR89.6 million.

Al-Barwani sukuk in dollars topped the most traded securities, accounting for 34.2 per cent of the total trading value, as its transactions amounted to OMR3.7 million. Bank Muscat came second with transactions worth about OMR2.2 million, then Al-Barwani’s sukuk in OMR, which amounted to OMR1.5 million, representing 13.6 per cent of the total turnover.

Last week, the losing shares outperformed the gainers, with the prices of 35 securities declining, while 16 securities recorded an increase, and 18 securities maintained their previous levels. Shell Oman Marketing share rose to 880 baisas, up by 6.8 per cent.

Raysut Cement was at the top of the losing stocks, declining by 14.3 per cent and closing at 125 baisas, A’Saffa Foods declined by 12.3 per cent and closed at 205 baisas and Al Khaleejia Mushroom Production fell to 198 baisas, down by 10.4 per cent.

Among the companies’ news, Dhofar Tourism Company said the company’s board of directors decided to convert the company from a public shareholding company to a closed joint stock company, and that procedures related to the transfer will be initiated immediately, including calling for an extraordinary general assembly meeting and completing the rest of the procedures.