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MENAFN - Jordan Times - 28/12/2008

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(MENAFN - Jordan Times) The general index of the Amman Stock Exchange (ASE) regressed last week affected by a downturn at major regional markets amid substantially lower trading volumes. The index went down by 4.9 per cent closing last week at 2,797.48 points due to lower prices of most strategic shares.

As for this week, we expect a slowdown in trading activity as investors adopt a wait-and-see attitude in anticipation of economic and company news ahead of the new year.

Indices of all sectors recorded losses, the largest was the real estate which fell by 8.5 per cent.

As for trading activity, 48.2 million shares exchanged hands leaving gains at 51 companies and losses at 134 firms out of 194 corporations traded.

In terms of the value traded by sector, the banking sector came in first place accounting for 32.7 per cent of the total value traded followed by the industrial with 20.5 per cent and then the real estate sector which accounted for 16 per cent of the value traded last week.

The most actively traded shares were those of United Arab Investors, First Jordan Investment, and Taameer Jordan Holdings with a combined value traded of JD10.9 million accounting for 9.62 per cent of total value traded.

Several block deals were executed last week; most significantly on Jordan Hotels and Tourism, Al Tajamouat for Catering & Housing and Masafat for Specialised Transport Corporation with transaction values of JD0.7 million, JD0.6 million and JD0.6 million.

The ASE has approved listing five million new shares of Al Ameer for Development and Multiple Projects on the second market, as of December 28, 2008

The bourse also approved listing 33.3 million additional shares in the paid-up capital of the Al Ahlia Enterprise Centre to take its total capital to JD39.3 million and the listing of one million additional shares in the paid-up capital of Jordan Vegetable Oil Industries, raising its paid-up capital to JD4 million as of December 28, 2008

Darat Jordan Holdings and Globe Williams International signed an agreement to establish a private shareholding company to offer facility management services, mainly in Jordan. Under the agreement, Darat Jordan will hold 40 per cent of the company's capital; JD0.15 million.

The total value of credit facilities extended by licensed banks until the end of year 2008 reached JD13.3 billion, whereas the total facilities granted by the banking system dropped by JD18.3 million during October 2008.

According to a survey conducted by the Department of Statistics in November, the unemployment rate dropped to 12. 7 per cent this year, the lowest since 1993, compared to 13.1 per cent in 2007.

The total value of domestic income and foreign grants went up by JD643.7 million or 19.9 per cent to JD3,883.5 million during the first 10 months of 2008, compared to JD3,239.8 million during the same period in 2007.

The public budget during the first 10 months of this year recorded a deficit of JD532.1 million compared to JD120.7 million for the same period last year.

Gross domestic product at fixed market prices, grew by 6.5 per cent during the third quarter of 2008 compared to 6.6 cent during the same period last year.


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