(MENAFN - Arab Times) Kuwait stocks edged lower Wednesday snapping the 10-day rally. The index retreated 6.92 pts in volatile trading amid profit booking in some of the mid-caps. The heavyweights closed narrowly mixed even as the investors await more corporate results. The KSX 15 benchmark rose 1.64 pts after sagging in the last three sessions whereas the weighted index inched 0.09 pts higher to 431.17 pts. The volume turnover ticked up to hit a fresh month's high helped mostly by speculative trade. Over 570 million shares changed hands - up 1.06 percent from the day before. KSE had climbed past the 6000 pts mark in the first week of the January.
The sectors swayed marginally in both directions. Consumer services outled the peers with 1.48 percent upswing whereas oil and gas dropped 0.94 percent, the worst performer of the day. In terms of volume , real estate dominated with 40.36 percent market share while financial services and industrials followed with 29.49 percent and 19.55 percent respectively.
Gulf Cables tumbled 40 fils to KD 1.260 after posting gains in the previous session and Kuwait Remal Real Estate Co slid 25 fil. National Industries Group edged 2 fils lower with a volume of 3.32 million shares. RISCO fell 4 fils to KD 0.242 and Kuwait Cement Co was down 5 fils. Metal and Recycling Co eased 4 fils to KD 0.114. Agility dropped 10 fils to KD 0.570 after trading 0.775 million shares over 38 deals. Wataniya Telecom was flat at KD 2.400 and Zain followed suit to wind up at KD 0.830. The telco last month has repaid due bonds worth SAR 867.85 million issued by Saudi Mobile Telecom Co.
The market opened flat and pulled lower in early trade. The index snapped back to rise marginally above the opening mark to hit the day's highest level of 6,255.04 pts before slipping back into red again. It troughed at 6224.14 pts and clawed back most of the losses in the final minutes. Top gainer of the day, Manafae rallied 9.09 percent to 60 fils and Al Nawadi was up by same measure. Remal dived 7.81 percent, the steepest decliner of the day, and Investors Holding Group topped the volume with over 155 million shares.
The market spread was skewed towards the losers. 38 stocks advanced whereas 51 closed lower. Of the 137 counters active on Wednesday, 48 closed lower. 8363 deals worth KD 32.56 million were transacted - up 7.87 percent in value from the day before.
"Although we may be in the anticipation period (for fourth-quarter earnings), the market is reacting very well to every other announcement particularly marked by the banks that have already announced," Global Investment House said in a note earlier in the week.
On the plus side, Mabanee Co climbed 20 fils and Kuwait Gulf Links rose 6 fils on back of 6.2 million shares. The stock has added 18 fils from the start of the month. Jazeera Airways rallied 15 fils on back of 3.5 million shares. The carrier has announced a 74 percent capital rise to KD 42 million which will help the firm to exchange its annual high-cost loans for lower-costing loans.
Kuwait Portland Cement Co closed flat at KD 1.200 after posting strong gains on Tuesday, and Kuwait Foundry Co followed suit. ALAFCO was up 5 fils at KD 0.355. The company has earned KD 11,148,431 and earnings per share 14.30 fils in the quarter ending 31/12/2012 as compared to KD 14,903,127 profit and earnings per share of 19.11 fils in the same period last year.
In the banking sector National Bank of Kuwait held the ground unchanged at KD 0.980 off early lows . The lender has posted a net profit of KD 305.1 million in full year 2012 compared with KD 302.4 million in the year before and the Group's total assets reached KD 16.4 billion by end of 2012.
Gulf Bank was flat at KD 0.410 after eking slight gains in the day before and Commercial Bank of Kuwait too was unchanged at KD 0.690. The stock has knocked off 20 fils from start of the month. Al Ahli Bank added 10 fils to end at KD 0.570 and Ahli United Bank stagnated at KD 0.840.
Kuwait International Bank paused at KD 0.315 with a volume of 1.29 million shares and Burgan Bank was up 10 fils at KD 0.570. The bank has won the approval of the Capital Market's Authority on issuing, marketing and selling subordinated bonds, of not more than KD 100 million. Kuwait Finance House was flat at KD 0.840 and Boubyan Bank too did not budge from its earlier close. Kuwait Investment Co eased 2 fils to KD 0.100 and Commercial Facilities Co slipped 5 fils. International Financial Advisors stagnated at 52 fils and National Investment Co followed suit. The company has earned KD 5.65 million and 6 fils EPS in the January-September period. KIPCO fell 5 fils to KD 0.390 after holding steady on Wednesday.
KIPCO was unchanged at KD 0.405 and Securities House Co inched 1 fils lower with a volume of 5.54 million shares. Kuwait Financial Centre Co stagnated at KD 0.142 and KMEFIC added 2.5 fils. Al Maal Investment edged 1.5 fils lower while Bayan Investment fell 1 fils to 39 fils. National Real Estate Co eased 2 fils to KD 0.120 whereas Tamdeen Investment Co ticked 2 fils higher. Salhiya Real Estate Co slid 15 fils to KD 0.340. Capital Market Authority approved the company's request to buy back or sell a maximum of 10% of its shares within 6 months from the date of approval. The bourse has been largely positive during the week and has gained 38.11 pts in last four sessions. The index has rallied 306.48 points from start of the month after edging lower in December. KSE, with 213 listed companies, is the second largest bourse in the region.
In the bourse related news, City Group has logged a net profit of KD 3.57 million and earnings per share of 31.67 fils in the full year 2012 rebounding from a net loss of KD 5.49 million and loss per share of 48.63 fils in the year before. The Board of Directors has recommended a cash dividend of 35 percent.
Al Masaken Intl. Real Estate Dev has posted a net profit of KD 1.07 million and earnings per share 5.38 fils in 2012 as compared to KD 1.45 million loss and loss per share of 7.28 fils. The Board of Directors has recommended a cash dividend of 5 percent.
Kuwait Building Materials Mfg. Co registered a net profit KD 411,453 and earnings per share of 14.2 fils in the full year ending 31/12/2012 as against KD 183,142 earnings and 6.3 fils EPS in the year before. The Board of Directors has recommended dividend payout of cash 5 percent or 5 fils plus 5 percent bonus shares.
By John Mathews