Tehran’s stock grows by 133%

TEHRAN (ISNA)- Bloomberg has released a report on growth of stock exchange in Tehran, highlighting its remarkable growth comparing to global exchange index.

While daily trading equals only about 22 seconds worth of stock transactions in the US, Iran’s market has been booming. The benchmark index soared 133 percent this year through Dec. 24 to a record, beating returns posted by the 93 major global equity gauges tracked by Bloomberg. Most of the rally followed the June election of 65-year-old Rouhani, who delivered an initial accord with global powers just five months into office.

Iranians are pulling out of assets that had become the conventional stores of wealth in the Islamist Republic of Iran — gold, dollars and real estate — to free up cash to invest in the stock market, according to Tehran-based investment boutique Turquoise Partners. An international investor can’t buy more than 10 percent of a company’s shares and any involvement is limited by banking restrictions.

Trading on the exchange is surging, with $203 million worth of shares changing hands on average each day this year through November. That’s up from $83 million two years ago and just $20 million in 2006, according to data from the bourse. Average daily trading in the U.S. stock market has topped $220 billion this year.

Banks and oil companies have been among the biggest gainers in Iran’s stock market. Saderat Bank Iran, subject to European Union sanctions since 2010, climbed as much as 142 percent this year from a 52-week low and Parsian Oil & Gas Co. has surged 87 percent from its trough.

This year’s rally in the benchmark gauge follows a 55 percent advance in 2012 and 24 percent gain the previous year. The market value of all companies on the exchange has climbed almost two thirds in dollar terms since 2011 to $175 billion.

By ISNA

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