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QSE begins new year trading on high note

QSE begins new year trading on high note


Satyendra Pathak
Doha
Qatari stocks began trading in 2018 on a high note as all sector indices supported the main index by closing in the green.
The Qatar Stock Exchange (QSE) main index went up 96.88 points, or 1.14 percent, to 8,620.26 points on Tuesday, the first trading session of 2018. The QSE was closed on January 1 on account of New Year holiday.
The day saw all the seven sector indices close in the positive territory.
The real estate sector spearheaded the gainers adding 1.89 percent after Barwa Real Estate's stock jumped 3.12 percent.
The consumer goods and services index and the telecom index, which gained 1.35 percent and 1.13 percent respectively, were also instrumental in lifting the main index higher.
The banking sector rose 0.93 percent boosted by Ahli Bank and National Leasing Holding Company that went up 6.41 percent and 3.27 percent respectively.
The industrial sector levelled up 0.86 percent on the back of a 2.53 percent increase in Aamal Company.
Qatari stocks are expected to perform better in 2018 as they are available at attractive prices, a Doha-based fund manager said.
"We believe the sharp sell-off in the last six months has led to a number of exciting opportunities in the Qatari stock market, especially with oil now back above $65," Akbar Khan, senior director of asset management at Al Rayan Investment, told Qatar Tribune.
Several stocks now boast dividend yields in excess of 6 percent, underlining the value proposition, Khan said. As always, he said, there will be winners and losers and it pays to focus on company fundamentals, and not just short term momentum.
"After the shock of the blockade, the country is now moving back towards growth as underlined by the recent budget announcement. Infrastructure spending will continue to average $500 million a week as major projects are brought closer to completion," he said.
Liquidity of the bourse went up to QR236.10 million from QR194.60 million on Sunday, while the trading volume declined to 9.55 million shares against 10.94 million in the previous session.
Among the blue chip companies, Masraf Al Rayan topped the list after rising 2.41 percent. It was followed by Qatar National Bank and Industries Qatar which grew 0.87 percent and 0.82 percent respectively.
Medicare Qatar, which added 9.99 percent, was the biggest gainer of the day.
Masraf Al Rayan was the most actively traded stock in terms of value and volume, generating QR39.9 million after 1.03 million shares changed hands.
Despite selling pressure from Qatari shareholders, the day saw 30 stocks out of the 41 traded on the day make gains. The rest of the 11 stocks declined.
Non-Qatari shareholders remained bullish throughout the day as they bought more than what they sold during the day.
While foreign retail investors accounted for 19.72 percent of the total buy, the share of the foreign funds in the total buy was 15.27 percent.

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