Egypt’s EGX30 Dives 2.9% As Political Instability Heightens

Egypt bourse has ended sessions on Wednesday incurring massive losses of around EGP 8 billion driven by the recent deterioration of the country’s political situation.

Accordingly, the Egyptian Exchange’s indices closed on dark red notes by Wednesday afternoon.

Egypt’s benchmark index EGX30 sank by 2.88% to close at 5071.91 p; while the EGX20, it dived by 3.48% to end at 5664.17 p.

Meanwhile, the mid- and small-cap index, the EGX70 pushed down by 2.77% to conclude at 412.4 p.  The price index EGX100 also shed by 2.66% to finish at 702.19 p.

The capital market has closed at EGP 343.237 billion on Wednesday.

Traded Volumes & Trades

During the closing session of Wednesday, the trading volume reached 97.553 million securities. For the traded value, it reached EGP 365.707 million, exchanged through 17.845 thousand transactions.

During the closing session of Wednesday, 179 listed securities have been traded in; 149 declined, 12 advanced; while 18 keeping their previous levels.

Investors’ Activity

The non-Arab foreigners and the Arabs’ selling pressures seizing as they were net sellers 34.99% and 6.25% respectively, of the total markets, with a net equity of EGP 10.473 million and 546.774 thousand excluding the deals.

Meanwhile, Egyptians were net buyers seizing  58.76% of the total markets, with a net equity of EGP 11.020 million, excluding the deals.

NGO Court Rule Repercussions

An Egyptian court’s decision to give jail terms to 43 Americans, Europeans, Egyptians and other Arabs in a case against democracy-promotion groups runs counter to its transition to democracy, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said on Tuesday.

“The United States is deeply concerned by the guilty verdicts and sentences, including the suspended sentences, handed down by an Egyptian court today against 43 NGO representatives in what was a politically-motivated trial,” Kerry said a written statement. “This decision runs contrary to the universal principle of freedom of association and is incompatible with the transition to democracy.”

Meanwhile, Virginia Rep. Frank Wolf (R-VA) spoke on Tuesday on the floor of the House of Representatives condemning an Egyptian court for sentencing 43 NGO workers, including Americans, to jail.  He also called for cutting off U.S. aid to the Muslim Brotherhood-led government in Cairo should the court decision stand.

The senator has urged U.S. President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry to personally raise this “travesty of justice” with Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi.

“This was a sham trial from the start.  If this decision stands, not a penny more of U.S. taxpayer money should go to the Muslim-Brotherhood led government in Cairo.

“I call on President Obama and Secretary Kerry to personally raise this travesty of justice with Egyptian President Morsi.”

On-Air Ethiopia Dam Talk Scandal

The talks, chaired by president Morsi, revolved around a report of a tripartite Egypt-Sudan-Ethiopia commission on Ethiopia’s decision to divert the Blue Nile for a massive dam project, sparking fears of a major impact on downstream states Egypt and Sudan.

Seated around a large table, the politicians thinking this was a closed meeting began to suggest ideas for ways to stop the dam project.

Ayman Nour, head of the liberal Ghad Party, suggested spreading rumors that Egypt was buying military planes in order to put “pressure” on Ethiopia, he said.

He also suggested Cairo send political, intelligence and military teams to Addis Ababa because “we need to intervene in their domestic affairs.”

Yunis Makhyun, who heads the conservative Islamist Nur Party, said the dam constituted a “strategic danger for Egypt”, requiring Cairo to support Ethiopian rebels “which would put pressure on the Ethiopian government.”

The meeting, a huge embarrassment both for the presidency and the opposition members who attended, caused a storm of ridicule and anger in the media.

“A scandal in front of the world,” read the headline of the independent daily Al-Tahrir.

Popular talk show host Reem Magued, who aired parts of the meeting on her show, said: “It’s true that we asked for transparency from the government but not like this, not to the point of scandal.”

Ethiopia has begun diverting the Blue Nile 500 metres (yards) from its natural course to construct a $4.2 billion (3.2 billion euro) hydroelectric project known as Grand Renaissance Dam.

The first phase of construction is expected to be complete in three years, with a capacity of 700 megawatts. Once complete the dam will have a capacity of 6,000 megawatts.