Economy, Business And Markets

Stocks Rally as SEO Chief Steps Down

Stocks Rally as SEO Chief Steps Down Stocks Rally as SEO Chief Steps Down

Stocks accelerated their rally on Wednesday, as large-scale deals between big market players boosted the market's climb a day after the entire board of the Securities and Exchange Organization were replaced. This is TSE's 11th day of straight gains.

The major trades occurred on Tehran Stock Exchange whose index, TEDPIX, grew more than double the Iran Fara Bourse's IFX. The gains in equity markets were accompanied by rial's weakening in foreign exchange markets. The Iranian currency slipped 0.3% to 35,350 rials per dollar, according to Tehran's Gold and Jewelers Union.

Mohammad Fetanat-Fard, the head of Iran’s market regulator, stepped down on Tuesday in a surprise move citing heart problem as the official reason. Deputy Economy Minister Shapour Mohammadi was appointed by the Bourse High Council to lead the organization.

  New Oversight

The other four board members of SEO were also replaced. The shuffle came as a surprise to markets.

Hassan Amiri, Ali Saeedi, Saeed Fallahpour and Ahmad Araqchi were appointed board members.

The new helmsman of the SEO has yet to announce detailed plans or whether the organization will take a new direction.

Mohammadi said on Wednesday a plan for Iran’s securities markets is on the president’s table, without giving any details.

The organization will have to deal with insider trading, corruption, market manipulation by state and quasi-state organizations and a lack of competition among exchanges, which have plagued Iran’s securities markets for years, not to mention a multitude of inter-agency regulatory challenges.

Mohammadi admitted to infraction in securities markets, but said “infraction in securities markets is a lot less than violations in the money markets.”

Economy Minister Ali Tayyebnia appointed Fetanat-Fard as his consultant. Fetanat-Fard headed the SEO for less than two years.

  IFB’s Mediocre Gains

IFB’s gains were small on Wednesday. The over-the-counter market went up 0.4% to 799.7 points, its highest since July 9, according to IFB’s website.

Saman Insurance surged nearly 5%, followed closely by Iranian Investment Incorporation Company. The two were the drivers of IFB’s gains.

Trade volume reached over $33.5 million and more than half the stocks on the market made gains.

  TSE Rallies Big

Tehran Stock Exchange rose just shy of a 1% to a two-month high of 76,225 points on Wednesday. This was TSE’s largest daily gain in four weeks. The benchmark ended the week 2.2% higher.

Trade volume reached $65.6 million for the day, nearly double that on the IFB, but not far off from the average daily trade volume during the week.

Block deals on Telecommunications Company of Iran, National Iranian Copper Industries Company, Civil Servants Pension Fund Investment Company, Tappico, Omid Investment Group and Ghadir Investment Group sent the market up over 1% in early trading hours. But stocks lost some of the gains, 69 points, and the TEDPIX closed 0.96% higher for the day.

TCI rose 3.45% to 2,189 rials, while National Iranian Copper Industries Company advanced 3.8% to 1,637 rials, boosting the TEDPIX the most. The investment arms of Iran’s two largest pension funds, the Civil Servants Pension Fund Investment Company and Tappico, Social Security Organization’s investment arm gained 4.37% to 1,695 rials and 3% to 1,956 rials respectively.

Omid Investment Group owned by Sepah Bank was up 4.4% to 1,496 rials, and Ghadir Investment Group, controlled by the Armed Forces Pension Organization rose nearly 2% to 1,965 rials due to the trading of its large stake d among major institutional players.