Bloomberg News

Egyptian Shares Gain for 2nd Day as ‘Discounts’ Attract Buyers

November 24, 2011

Nov. 24 (Bloomberg) -- Egyptian stocks advanced for a second day after 10 sessions of losses pushed shares to the cheapest levels in seven months.

The benchmark EGX 30 Index rose 1.7 percent, the biggest increase this month, to 3,780.13 at the 2:30 p.m. close in Cairo. That pared the measure’s decline this week to 8.4 percent. Orascom Telecom Holding SAE, North Africa’s biggest mobile-phone company by subscribers, advanced the most in more than two months.

Violent clashes that erupted between security forces and protesters seeking an end to military rule on Nov. 19 have forced the market’s average price-to-book ratio to 1.03, the lowest level on a monthly basis since April. That compares with 1.84 for the benchmark TUNINDEX in Tunisia, the Arab country whose uprising toppled its president in January.

“The market was very discounted because of the unrest,” said Omar Darwish, equity sales trader at Cairo-based Commercial International Brokerage Co. “Foreign investors in particular are seeing buying opportunities for the big caps.”

Egypt is due to start parliamentary elections on schedule Nov. 28, the country’s ruling military council and the elections commission supervising the vote said today. The stock market will be closed Nov. 27 for a public holiday and the following day for the start of the elections.

Orascom Telecom jumped 6.1 percent to 2.98 Egyptian pounds. The Egyptian bourse suspend trading of its shares as of today’s close at Orascom’s request to allow it to split into two companies. Commercial International Bank Egypt SAE, the country’s biggest publicly traded lender, climbed 3.9 percent, the most since Oct. 30, to 21.46 pounds.

--Editors: Susan Lerner, Shanthy Nambiar

To contact the reporter on this story: Ahmed A Namatalla in Cairo at anamatalla@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Claudia Maedler at cmaedler@bloomberg.net


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