CAIRO: The Egyptian Exchange (EGX) rose collectively this week and market capitalization gained around 2.2 billion EGP ($307.6 million) amid upbeat investor sentiment following remarks by President Abdel Fatah al-Sisi about some upcoming “pleasant surprises” in the coming few days.
The benchmark index EGX30 edged up 1.23 percent to end the week at 8,744 points, up from 8,637 points last week. The small and mid-cap index EGX70 also rose 0.74 percent to hit 619 points, compared with 615 points last week.
The broader index EGX100 also added 0.55 percent to end at 1,095 points, compared with 1,089 points last week. Market capitalization amounted to 494.2 billion EGP, compared with 481.9 billion EGP last week.
Total trade value amounted to 4.1 billion EGP, with 475 million securities traded over 68,000 transactions, down from a total of 4.3 billion EGP and 607 million securities traded on 82,000 transactions the week prior.
Market bellwether CIB led the rally, soaring up 6.19 percent to 40.81 EGP, compared to 38.43 EGP. It hit an all-time high, after it announced a 30.8 percent increase in profits during the first half of 2014, according to consolidated financial statements released Wednesday.
CIB profits jumped to 1.7 billion net profits in the first half of the year, compared with nearly 1.3 EGP billion in the same period last year.
This positive news along with Sisi’s comments during a speech commemorating the 62nd anniversary of the 1952 July 23 Revolution, helped the EGX recover from a two-day slide early this week following the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) raising of interest rates.
The EGX was also affected by news of an attack in Wadi Gedid governorate that killed 22 border guards in a shootout at a security checkpoint last Saturday, and ongoing Gaza violence.
“Sisi’s remarks about an upcoming ‘pleasant surprise’ carried some positive indicators for investors, and supported the market’s bullish performance,” capital market expert Abdel Rahman Taha told The Cairo Post Thursday.
“In his speech, Sisi spoke about an economy that promotes Egyptians and achieves their welfare. Sisi said Egypt doesn’t need an economy that steals freedom, meaning there is independence in political and economic decisions,” Taha said.
Sisi also addressed incomes and providing job opportunities for youth. This indicates lower unemployment rates in the first quarter of the current fiscal year, Taha added.
“The president also talked about agriculture and a road network, and seemed optimistic and satisfied, and this means that his sadness and concerns about Egypt’s future disappeared and that he started to reap the benefits of his economic thoughts with no worries,” said Taha.