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Prague Stock Exchange in January: a record slump

Prague Stock Exchange in January: a record slump

04.02.2008 13:49

The main PX index suffered a record loss in January as it fell by 17.4%. The other two markets in the CE3 region, Polish and Hungarian, wrote off 14.6 and 10.5% respectively. The trade volatility in January was quite high and the total volume traded mounted to CZK 127.4 billion, the second highest in history (the record was reached in September 2005), thus exceeding the long-term averages by more than 80 percent. Besides the January losses, there was a huge rally on January 24 when the main PX index jumped by 8.4 % making it the biggest increase in the history of the market.

Due to the fears of possible US recession, the Fed cut interest rates by 75bps at an emergency meeting outside its regular schedule and then yet by another 50bps at its regular meeting few days later. Investors on the PSE followed the overall negative sentiment on the global markets and therefore the usually positive „January effect“ did not materialize this year. All stocks traded in SPAD, the elite system of the Prague Stock Exchange, disappointed their shareholders and declined.

Philip Morris and Zentiva shares managed to lose the least, around 6%, thus becoming the „stars“ of the month, closely followed by Telefonica O2 CR with -7.6 percent. The real-estate sector received the hardest blow, with the worst performing stock – developer ECM –losing 35%. AAA Auto, second-hand car dealer, and Erste Bank both lost more than 30 percent with Erste reaching its 3-year low. Komercni Banka (-14.1%) was suspended from trading for several hours following the news that its parent company, Société Générale, had reported losses due to the fraud of EUR 4.9bn. Unipetrol closed the month 14.7 percent lower after its management reported operating loss due to prolonged shutdowns.

The future development of the stock market depends mainly on published reports. The reporting season for the 4Q07 starts in February with Telefonica O2 CR being traditionally the first one, followed by both banks and then CEZ and Unipetrol.

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