The new Iraqi stock market

Iraq has just started its new Stock market. Fifteen stocks available…and thirty by the end of the month. Pepsi Baghdad, Al-Helal Industry, Dar-Al-Salam bank, Al-Kazer Construction are a few of the ones available for investment today…

Open your account by emailing here.

So far trading appears to be enthusiastic and more than a little volatile:

The miniature Liberty Bell clanged. Elbows flew. Sweat poured down foreheads. Sales tickets were passed and, with a flick of the wrist, 10,000 shares of the Middle East Bank had more than doubled in value.
The frantic pace yesterday of those first 10 minutes of trading typified the enthusiasm behind the Iraq Stock Exchange, an institution seen as a critical step in building a new Iraqi economy.

In five sessions, trading volume has nearly quadrupled, and the value of some stocks has surged more than 600 percent. Traders say the gains reflect the pent-up frustration of 15 months of closure.
“How can I not be excited by this?” asked Taha Ahmed Abdul-Salam, the exchange’s chief executive officer, as he eyed the activity on the trading floor.

Trading is open for two hours a day, two days a week. And how do you like this quotation from the Iraq Securities Commission?

“Right now, we’re all working together to build up the exchange. Later, when things are running smoother, then we’ll give them a hard time,” Mr. al-Okali said with a wink.

Here is the full story. Recall that not long ago, Iraq opened up markets in government securities.

If I could add to my media wish list, it would include more coverage of these developments, along with regular price reports.


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