Utility shares lift Oman's stock market

Business Monday 22/May/2017 17:07 PM
By: Times News Service
Utility shares lift Oman's stock market

Muscat: Gains in utility companies lifted the MSM30 Index to 5,413.43 points, a gain of 0.11 per cent. The MSM Sharia Index ended at 791.49 points, up by 0.03 per cent. Al Madina Takaful remained the most active in terms of volume as well as turnover. Al Madina Takaful, up by 2.65 per cent, was the top gainer while Muscat Finance was the top loser, with a loss of 0.84 per cent.
As many as 623 trades were executed on Monday, generating a turnover of OMR2.59 million with 19.5 million shares changing hands. Out of 37 traded securities, 11 advanced, 6 declined, and 20 remained unchanged. Foreign investors switched to net buyers of shares worth OMR125,000 followed by GCC and Arab investors for OMR60,000 while Omani investors were net sellers for OMR185,000 worth of shares.
Financial Index closed at 7,977.12 points, up by 0.08 per cent. Al Madina Takaful, Taageer Finance, National Bank of Oman, Bank Sohar and Oman Orix Leasing gained 2.65 per cent, 0.91 per cent, 0.89 per cent, 0.69 per cent and 0.65 per cent, respectively. Muscat Finance, HSBC Bank, Global Financial Investment and Al Anwar Holding declined by 0.84 per cent, 0.77 per cent, 0.62 per cent and 0.48 per cent, respectively.
Industrial Index ended at 7,357.81 points, up by 0.09 per cent. Galfar Engineering, up by 1.27 per cent, was the sole mover in the sector.
Services Index gained 0.37 per cent to finish at 2,771.75 points. Sembcorp Salalah, Sohar Power, Phoenix Power, Al Suwadi Power and OIFC increased by 2.13 per cent, 1.92 per cent, 1.49 per cent, 0.56 per cent and 0.50 per cent, respectively. Ooredoo and Oman Telecommunications Company declined by 0.40 per cent and 0.39 per cent, respectively.
Aldar Properties
Abu Dhabi-listed Aldar Properties won a contract on Monday to build a new site for the twofour54 free trade zone that hosts media firms.
Aldar, the state-linked construction firm that built Abu Dhabi's Formula One circuit, was awarded the build-operate-transfer contract for the new site by the government-owned Media Zone Authority-Abu Dhabi, twofour54 said in a statement.
The United Arab Emirates has built free trade zones across the country, offering foreign firms 100 per cent ownership and repatriation of profits. Outside these zones, firms in the UAE usually need to be at least 51 per cent owned by UAE nationals.
The twofour54 free zone for media firms, now based in Abu Dhabi city, will move to nearby Yas Island where the Formula One circuit is located. Companies that are already set up in the free zone include CNN and Sky News Arabia.
The first phase of building the free trade zone is valued at 1 billion dirhams ($272 million), the statement said. The initial gross floor area would be 95,000 square metres and would expand over time to 300,000 square metres, it said.
Dubai, another of the seven emirates making up the UAE, has developed specialised free trade zones for various industries, ranging from media to health.