Friday, March 4, 2011

Market Intelligence - Equities

During the week of 17 – 21 January 2011, African stock markets showed mixed performance, while the bullish trend of major global markets weakened. The major global markets ended the trading week on a steady tone combined with positive and negative factors cancelling each other out. Better than expected earnings buoyed bullish market sentiment, while the concern about China’s tightening policy and the volatility of commodity prices dampened the markets. The stock markets in Ghana recorded the strongest gain of 16.1% over the previous weeks, followed by Nigeria and Uganda, registering gains of 1.5%. On the other hand, the stock market in Egypt recorded the largest loss of 6.4% during the week followed by that of Côte d'Ivoire with a 2.5% loss, while the markets in South Africa, Morocco and Kenya posted moderate losses of 1.6%, 1.1%, and 0.8%, respectively. Tunisia’ index remained unchanged over the week.

Equity Focus

Ghana: The Ghana stock market continued its rally, leaping by 16.1% over the week. The rise in equity prices reflected in part the prospects for strong economic growth estimated at 13.4% in 2011 and 10% in 2012. As oil production begins, Ghana is projected to be the fastest growing economy in sub-Saharan Africa and to become a lower-middle-income country. Outside the oil sector, Ghana’s economy is expected to also register strong growth, particularly in construction services, as large infrastructure projects are carried out. Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) announced that the value of projects registered by the GIPC increased by 106.7% to GHS 1.79 billion in 2010 compared with GHS 867.98 million for 2009. The GIPC registered a total of 385 projects in 2010 compared to 257 projects registered in 2009. The GIPC assessed the success was on the back of vigorous investment promotional activities and services offered to existing and potential investors.

Egypt: The Egypt CASE 30 index fell significantly by 6.4% following the 0.6% loss during the previous week, mainly because of the negative regional sentiment arising from the political uncertainty in Tunisia. The drop in the index was largely driven by losses in the financial sector, which include CIB (Commercial International Bank), NSGB (National Societe Generale Bank) and EFG-Hermes.

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