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Kuwait-based Global Investment House: 7.96% Increase in Oman Corporates Profitability
Global Arab Network - - Reda Darwish
Omani companies reported an improved performance in 2009 as the impact of the financial crisis was mitigated by government stimulus measures in tandem with initiatives by market regulators to bolster the corporate sector.

According to Kuwait-based Global Investment House, the overall profitability of listed companies in the organised market (excluding all companies with fiscal year not ending on December 31, 2009) exceeded expectations, rising 7.96 per cent rise to RO 492.2 million in 2009 compared to RO 455.9 million in 2008. This amelioration was mainly supported by the rise in profitability of the Cement, and Insurance sectors. Also, the Investment sector was a major contributor in the positive performance of Omani market, Global said.

Sector-wise, MSM regular market consists of 52 listed companies (excluding 9 companies with fiscal year not ending December 31, 2009 and listed preferred shares). Those companies fall under eight sectors: Banking, Investment, Cement, Telecom, Industrial, Services, Petrochemical and Insurance. None of these sectors witnessed net losses during 2009. Out of these eight sectors, three decreased in profits, three increased and two managed to turn their 2008 losses into gains in 2009.

The Banking sector was the major contributor to the total corporate profitability in 2009, as it constituted 32 per cent compared to 42 per cent in 2008. The consolidated net profit of the banking sector posted the highest annual drop of 19.2 per cent to reach
RO 158.3m in 2009 compared to RO 195.9m in 2008.
The Investment Sector contributed 7 per cent of the total market’s profitability for 2009, while it was excluded from the 2008 sectors’ contribution due to net losses amounting to RO14.2m recorded in 2008.

Aggregate net profit of the sector amounted to RO 32.1m in 2009 with four companies among the sector have reported significant rise in profitability and other four were able to turn last year losses to gains in 2009.
This was mainly due to lower provisions and massive improvement in income from investments figures.

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