Japanese group Monstarlab launches new office in Riyadh

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s Tadawul All Share Index on Wednesday gained 89.56 points — or 0.89 percent — to close at 10,051.78, extending Tuesday’s 101.52 points rise registered after seven sessions of losses.  

While MSCI Tadawul 30 Index increased 1.03 percent to 1,385.96, the parallel market Nomu closed higher at 19,216.88.  

TASI’s total trading turnover of the benchmark index was SR4.13 billion ($1.10 billion) as 138 stocks of the listed 224 advanced and 70 retracted.  

The day’s highlight was the healthy resurgence of the banking and insurance sectors, which grew over 2 percent to 10,542.78 points and 5,973.98 points.  

The banking sector surge was led by Arab National Bank, which shot up 8.6 percent to SR25. Riyad Bank emerged as a close second, rising 5.37 percent to SR27.45.   

Saudi British Bank and Banque Saudi Fransi, which zoomed up by 4.98 percent and 4.13 percent, were among Wednesday’s top performers.  

The Media and Entertainment Index was also in the spotlight as it leaped 4 percent to 22,870.58, following healthy buying in the shares of Saudi Research and Media Group, which closed 4.19 percent higher to SR194.  

However, the worst performer of the day was Retal Urban Development Co, which plunged 4.37 percent to SR122.40.  

The company on March 1 reported a 27 percent increase in net profit after zakat and tax to SR245.7 million in 2022 from SR193.3 million in 2021.  

It also booked an increase in its share of results of equity-accounted investments and gains from investments at fair value and other income, which led to a rise in the net profit margin of 22.2 percent in 2022 from 17.8 percent in the previous year.  

Its net profit in the fourth quarter of 2022 fell 15 percent to SR62.5 million from SR73.4 million during the same period in 2021.  

The company’s board of directors recommended a 30 percent cash dividend for the second half of 2022 at SR3 per share.  

On the announcements front, Methanol Chemicals Co., also known as Chemanol, reported a 15 percent decline in its annual net profit to SR206.4 million from SR244 million in 2021.   

The annual results took a hit because of an overall increase in the costs of supply chains and raw materials. Average selling prices also declined during the third and fourth quarters of the year.  

In the fourth quarter of 2022, the company registered a net loss of SR16 million against a net profit of SR79.86 million in the year-ago period. Chemanol’s share price dipped 1.69 percent to SR24.46.  

Watani Iron Steel Co. also announced a 5 percent increase in the net profit to SR49.6 million for 2022 to SR47.1 million a year earlier. Its share price closed slightly higher at SR53.  

Meanwhile, Al-Babtain Power and Telecommunication Co. informed the stock exchange that Portugal-based Metalogalva Co. acquired a 26 percent stake in Al Babtain France, which is 51 percent owned by Al Babtain, for SR3.74 million. Its share price increased 2.6 percent to SR22.06.  

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