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MENAFN - Arab News - 05/08/2009

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(MENAFN - Arab News) Saudi Steel Pipe Co. (SSP) made its Tadawul debut with a 34 percent increase in its share price.

The SR25 SSP shares opened at SR35 and reached a high of SR36.70 and a low of SR33.40 before settling at SR33.50 at the close of the first day's trading.

Selling across most sectors dragged the Saudi market down. The Tadawul All-Share Index (TASI) closed 0.67 percent lower at 5,779.33 on Tuesday.

The stock market turnover was over SR4 billion on Tuesday.

In a reverse of Monday's close, the market saw only one positive sector close on Tuesday, namely the Transport sector, which closed with a gain of 0.27 percent.

On the other hand, the sector losses ranged from 0.33 percent in the Insurance sector to 1.72 percent for Hotel & Tourism. The Telecom sector closed with effectively no change, although the net change was a loss of 0.02 points. Overall market breadth was negative, with 23 advancers and 97 decliners created an AD ratio of 0.24, the Jeddah-based Financial Transaction House (FTH) said in its daily market commentary on Tuesday.

The top gainer on Tuesday was Alahli Takaful Company (ATC) with 9.94 percent increase at SR177.

Allied Cooperative Insurance Group's shares declined 4.18 percent to SR57.25.

Meanwhile, the Capital Market Authority has approved Qassim Cement Co. request to increase its capital from SR450 million to SR900 million through issuing bonus shares.

Such increase will be paid by transferring an amount of SR200 million from the statutory reserve, in addition to SR250 million from the retained earnings to the company's capital. Consequently, increasing company's outstanding shares from 45 million to 90 million shares.

The bonus shares eligibility is limited to the shareholders who are registered in the shareholders register at the close of trading on the extraordinary general assembly day, which will be determined later by the company's board, the company said in a statement on Tadawul's website on Tuesday.

The CMA, the Kingdom's market regulator, has announced that shares of National Petrochemical Company (Petrochem) will start trading on Saturday (Aug. 8) on the Saudi stock market within the Petrochemical Industries sector with an unrestricted price limit for the first day of trading only.

An initial public offering (IPO) by the company attracted SR1.69 billion last month.

Petrochem has said it will use the proceeds of the share sale to finance the acquisition of a stake in Saudi Polymers Company and to cover costs during the establishment period, according to the Bahrain-based TAIB Securities' GCC daily report on Tuesday.

By Khalil Hanware


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