Robust petrochemicals send Saudi stocks to higher ground


10/08/2017 06:01 AST

Saudi Arabia stocks were higher after the close on Wednesday, as gains in the Petrochemicals, Industrial Investment and Multi Investment sectors led shares higher. At the close, the Tadawul All Share Index added 0.11% to 7,153 points as petrochemical maker PetroRabigh jumped 6.9 percent in its heaviest trade since mid-May after reporting that second-quarter net profit more than tripled from a year earlier.

Rising stocks outnumbered declining ones on the Saudi Arabia Stock Exchange by 104 to 68 and 8 ended unchanged.

Ethylene producer National Petrochemical (Petrochem) rose 3.2 percent. It reported a net profit of SR132.3 million ($35.3 million), shrinking by about a third from a year ago, but attributed this to an unplanned shutdown of one of its plants in May and higher financing costs.

Petrochem’s majority shareholder, Saudi Industrial Investment Group, lost 1.6 percent after its quarterly net income fell 54 percent.

The best performers of the session on the Tadawul All Share were Saudi Printing & Packaging Company, which rose 9.91% or 2.02 points to trade at 22.40 at the close. Meanwhile, Nama Chemicals Co. added 9.87% or 1.48 points to end at 16.48 and Saudi Arabian Amiantit Co. was up 9.54% or 0.56 points to 6.43 in late trade.

The worst performers of the session were Saudi Research and Marketing Group, which fell 5.54% or 4.50 points to trade at 76.80 at the close. Saudi Marke declined 4.98% or 1.50 points to end at 28.60 and Saudi Industrial Export Co was down 4.35% or 1.45 points to 31.85.

Shares in Saudi Printing & Packaging Company rose to 52-week highs; gaining 9.91% or 2.02 to 22.40.

Crude oil for September delivery was up 0.83% or 0.41 to $49.58 a barrel. Elsewhere in commodities trading, Brent oil for delivery in October rose 0.92% or 0.48 to hit $52.62 a barrel, while the December Gold Futures contract rose 1.24% or 15.71 to trade at $1278.31 a troy ounce.

The US Dollar Index Futures was up 0.19% at 93.66.

Elsewhere, Dubai’s stock index edged down 0.1 percent as DXBE fell 2.5 percent after reporting a first-half net loss of 578 million dirhams ($157 million). The company has not made a profit since it opened its first theme parks and hotels in October 2016.

The company said it was reorganizing its business into three units: theme parks, family entertainment centers, and retail and hospitality. It also announced an agreement with local developer Meraas to manage its portfolio of leisure and entertainment offerings including Hub Zero, Splash Pad and Roxy Cinemas.

Builder Arabtec fell 2.3 percent, despite saying it swung to a net profit attributable to the parent of 39.8 million dirhams in the three months to June 30 from a loss of 186.4 million dirhams a year ago.

In Abu Dhabi, the index was down 0.7 percent as Dana Gas fell 1.5 percent. Qatar’s largest petrochemical producer, Industries Qatar , dropped 1.5 percent after its second-quarter net profit shrank 47 percent from a year earlier to 682 million rials ($187 million), missing analysts’ average forecast of 787 million rials. The Doha index was down 0.7 percent.

Egypt’s index dropped 0.4 percent as property developer Emaar Misr jumped 4.7 percent to 2.65 Egyptian pounds.

The company reported second-quarter net profit rose to 539 million Egyptian pounds ($30.4 million) from 436.8 million pounds a year ago. The stock is at trailing 12-month price/earnings ratio of 6.2 times, according to Thomson Reuters data, cheaper than some other major developers such as Talaat Mostafa at 17.7 times and Amer Group at 9.3 times.

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