Gulf Continues to Accelerate

Via Arabian, an interesting article detailing the biggest share gainers in the Gulf during the first half of 2008.  According to the report:

“…Four of the world’s top ten performing stock exchanges are in the Gulf.

Oman’s main stock index has gained 29.4 percent since the beginning of the year as Kuwait advanced 21.3 percent, while Qatar rose 21.2 percent and Abu Dhabi increased by 7.4 percent.

Lebanon has become the world’s second-best performing stock exchange recording gains of 35.6 percent since the beginning of the year, trailing Ghana which recorded a 39.5 percent rise.

Kuwaiti civil and industrial construction company Mena Holding topped the list, with returns of 469.2 percent since the beginning of the year. Second was UAE-based International Fish Farming, up 369 percent, and third was Network Holding, also based in Kuwait which gained 232.4 percent.

The increases were measured from the beginning of the year to the close of the markets on July 12.

Companies with small market capitalizations recorded the biggest gains ,with Oman and Kuwait together accounting for most of the fastest-rising shares.

“The increased transparency in these markets is really helping the visibility of small-cap companies,” Vinod Shenoy, an analyst with Global Investment House in Kuwait, told Arabian Business.

“They are becoming more open and more mature, and there is a lot more participation and a lot more interest in listing companies, irrespective of their size.”

The survey measured the share performance of companies with market capitalizations of more than $100 million, listed on the bourses of the UAE, Oman, Qatar, Kuwait, Bahrain and Saudi Arabia.

 “Oman is doing particularly well on the back of the real GDP growth that it is enjoying, which is expected to be around 5.2 percent this year,” said Shenoy.

“The oil revenues are forming a major part of Oman’s exports, and driving its economy as it looks to diversify going forward, with a number of tourism and residential projects in the pipeline.

“The growth is good now, and you can expect this to continue over the next ten years as Oman develops its infrastructure and other elements.”

Real estate developer Arabtec was the best performing-firm with a market capitalization of more than $1 billion, in seventh place.”

This entry was posted on Sunday, July 20th, 2008 at 4:20 pm and is filed under Abu Dhabi, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar.  You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.  Both comments and pings are currently closed. 

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