ASE Participates in the Fourteenth Annual Meeting of the FEAS
The ASE, represented by the Deputy CEO, Mr. Nader Azer, participated in the Fourteenth Annual Meeting of Federation of European-Asian Stock Exchanges (FEAS) which was held in Abu Dhabi in the period between November 10-12,2008. The ASE won the presidency of the working committee unanimously for two years and for the third time in the elections, which took place in the meeting.
Several issues were discussed such as the Federation plan for the year 2008, the closing statements for the year 2007, approving the financial statements for the Federation and appointing the auditor. In addition to the revenues and expenditure analysis of the FEAS members, revising the semi-annual report of the Federation and the bilateral exchange visit program between the Federation members. Also, the future activity plan and the budget for the year 2009 were discussed. The members finally agreed on holding the next meeting in 2009 in Montenegro. They also elected Istanbul Stock Exchange as the chairman of the Federation, Muscat Securities Market as the deputy chairman, and Baghdad Securities Market and Sarajevo Stock Exchange as members in the executive committee instead of Karachi and Ukraine stock exchanges.
The ASE Participates in the International Arbitration Conference
The ASE was invited by Cairo Regional Center for International Commercial Arbitration to participate in the Conference of Appling New York Arbitration Provisions Agreement. The Director of the Legal Department, Mrs. Abla Najdawi, represented the ASE in the conference, which was held in the League of Arab States headquarters during the period of 10-11 November 2008. Several issues were discussed such as the importance of New York agreement and its role in spreading the international arbitration.
The ASE has applied the arbitration provisions by issuing the Directives for Dispute Resolutions for the year 2004. The Directives state that any dispute between a client and brokerage firm shall be resolved by arbitration provided that the account opening agreement include an arbitration condition. A number of arbitration sessions were held in the ASE, and a final verdict was issued in seven lawsuits.
The ASE is going to participate in the sixth conference for the Arab Union for Arbitration, which will take place in Amman in December 20 th 2008. A workshop about the directives for dispute resolutions at the ASE will be held in the presence of elite Arab and Jordanian arbitrators.
Meeting of the Organization of the Islamic Conference Member Exchanges
The ASE, represented by the Director of Listing and Operations Department, Mr.Bassam Abu-Abbas and the Head of the Operations Division, Mr. Mohammad Shneiwer, participated in the second meeting of the Organization of the Islamic Conference member exchanges which was held in Istanbul in the period between October 18-19,2008.
The meeting aimed at fostering cooperation between members. Several important issues were discussed during the meeting such as increasing compliance and harmony between laws and instructions of the financial markets and creating the necessary procedures to open the contact channels between the members.
A Delegation from the Saudi Capital Market Authority Visits the ASE
A Delegation from the Saudi Capital Market Authority visited the Jordan capital market institutions. The Deputy CEO of the ASE, Mr. Nader Azar, briefed the delegation on the operations at the ASE and the basic investment principles in the exchange. He also tackled the latest legislative and technical developments of the Jordan capital market and their impact on enhancing market transparency, liquidity and efficiency. The delegation had a tour in the different departments of the ASE and visited the Investors Gallery and several brokerage firms.
A Delegation from Al-Balqa' Applied University Visits the ASE
A student delegation from the Planning and Management faculty from Al-Balqa' Applied University visited Jordan capital market institutions. The Head of Awareness and Public Relations department briefed the delegation about the operations at the ASE and the basic investment principles in the exchange. They also had an overview on the latest legislative and technical developments of Jordan capital market, the trading system of the ASE and its future plans.
The Companies' Third Quarter Reports for the year 2008
The CEO of Amman Stock Exchange, Mr. Jalil Tarif, said that the time limit of submitting the quarterly reports from the companies listed at the First Market has ended by the end of Thursday 30/10/2008. The number of companies which submitted their audited quarterly reports reached 116 companies representing (92.8%) of the overall companies listed at the First Market.
By virtue of the ASE (15/B) Listing Directives, all companies listed at the First Market must submit reviewed quarterly reports during the first month follows the said quarter. Such a step assures the First Market companies' transparency and disclosure in addition to abiding by other strict conditions relating to their financial position, profitability and shares liquidity.
Tarif added that the ASE circulates these reports to the brokerage firms, post them on, ASE boards and on the ASE website (Arabic version) 184.108.40.206 in the Circulars and Disclosures/quarterly reports window.
Tarif also said that Industrial Development Bank, Universal Modern Industries, International Ceramic Industries have submitted their un-reviewed quarterly reports. Whereas, Jordan National Bank, Beit Al-Mal Saving & Investment for Housing, United Arab Investors Jordan Phosphate Mines, Al-Qaria Food and Vegetable Oil Industries, Arab Pharmaceutical Manufacturing have not submitted their reviewed quarterly report in breach of Article (15/B) of the Directives for Listing securities.
ASE Participates in the Economic Media and Financial Markets Forum
Amman Stock Exchange has participated in the Economic Media and Financial Markets Forum, which was organized by the Jordan Securities Commission in cooperation with the Arab Federation of Securities Commission in October 21 st , 2008. A number of participants from different Arab countries such as United Arab Emirates, Morocco, Egypt, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Tunis, Iraq and Palestine also took part in the forum, in addition to some brokerage firms and Jordanian companies. In the forum, several issues were discussed pertaining to the economic media and its relation to the national economy, the impact of market data on the financial markets and the economic analyses and their impact on investors and public opinion, besides some Arab experiences in the field of raising awareness in securities markets.
Jordan Capital Market Conference in New York
Under the patronage of the Jordan Securities Commission (JSC), the Amman Stock Exchange (ASE), in cooperation with the Bank of New York Mellon and Auerbach Grayson Company and in partnership with the Securities Depository Center (SDC), organized a Jordan Capital Market Conference in New York during the period September 16-18, 2008. The conference aimed at achieving interconnection with the international capital markets and international investors. The conference was attended by chairmen of the ASE, the CEOs of the ASE and SDC, representatives of the shareholding companies listed at the ASE and around 50 investment managers representing major investment companies and funds in the United States.
In the opening speech, the Executive Chairman of the JSC, Dr. Bassam Saket welcomed the participants and thanked the Bank of New York Mellon and Auerbach Grayson for their help in preparing for the conference. Dr. Saket talked about the development witnessed by the Jordan capital market in terms of disclosure and transparency, as well as the investment opportunities of the Jordanian market and the main performance indicators of the ASE. He added that this conference which was held for the second time in New York, represents a translation of one of the items of the capital market strategy, which is in line with the directives of HM King Abdullah II Bin Al-Hussein for strengthening the market, increasing foreign investment and creating an attractive investment environment in order to make Jordan an advanced financial center in the region. It also provides financial companies and national institutions the opportunity to present their achievements and the investment opportunities available to international investors, and allows investors to learn of the current legislations and regulations that govern the work of capital market institutions as well as future trends, particularly in the areas of disclosure, market development and regulation, and the measures that emphasize the rule of law on trading for the purpose of protecting investors.
The Chairman of the ASE, Mr. Mohammad S. Hourani, delivered a speech in which he praised such conferences that contribute to increasing cooperation between the Jordanian companies and American investors. He added that the ASE is keen on holding this conference for the second time so as to attract the non-Jordanian investments, and he talked about the advantages of investments in Jordanian market such as the safety and political stability.
Mr. Jalil Tarif, the CEO of the ASE reviewed the investment opportunities at the ASE, as well as the history of the Jordan capital market and the latest legislative, technological and quantitative developments witness in the market . He stressed that the ASE was able to attract more foreign investments, as a result foreign ownership exceeded 50% of the market capitalization, indicating that this was due to the investors' confidence in investing at the ASE, which enjoys complete freedom of capital movement and no taxes on capital gains or cash dividends, in an attractive investment structure and economic openness. Finally he compared the ASE performance with the international and Arab markets, and he mentioned some future plans of the ASE such as the national financial center and other projects that will ameliorate the investments environment and enhance transparency.
The SDC CEO Mr. Samir Jaradat reviewed the role that SDC plays in the processes of settlement and clearing and ownership transfer. He also addressed the international standards that are applied by SDC and that contribute to enhancing confidence in the Jordan capital market as SDC developed the electronic environments to go in line with the international standards so as to offer the services for the different members of the market.
Following the presentations of capital market institutions and companies, one on one meetings were held between the Jordanian companies and investors interested in investing in the Jordanian market. The meetings came in response to the investors' wishes to explore investment opportunities in these companies. A total of 55 one on one meetings were held with leading investors.
The Executive Chairman of the JSC, Dr. Basam Saket, the CEO of the ASE, Mr. Jalil Tarif and the SDC CEO Mr. Samir Jaradat met a number of international journalists and talked about the privileges of investments in Jordan.
Finally, the delegation visited the Nasdaq which is one of the biggest international stock exchanges. They met the Deputy CEO and a number of officials with whom they discussed cooperation chances. Dr. Saket rang the exchange's closing bell which was broadcast live on a number of TV channels.
Companies took part in the conference: Arab Bank, The Arab Potash, Housing Bank For Trade and Finance, Jordan Telecom, Tameer Jordan Holdings, United Arab Investors, Middle East Complex for Engineering, Electronics and Heavy Industries, Alia-The Royal Jordanian Airlines, Jordan Commercial Bank, First Jordan Investment, Amwal Invest, Jordan Investment Trust, Al-Sanabel international For Islamic Investments. Representatives of those companies, which represent 60% of the total market capitalization of the ASE, gave presentations about their companies, their past and current projects, future projects, and its impact on the profit of these companies.
ASE Participates in the Fifth Jordanian Businessmen and Investors Conference
The ASE, represented by the CEO Mr.Jalil Tarif, participated in the Fifth Jordanian Businessmen and investors Conference, which was held in Radisson Sass/Amman in the period between August 13-14,2008. During a working session about investment in Jordan securities market, Tarif talked about the developments of the market and the factors affecting its efficiency. He also said that the ASE gives the foreign investors a chance to diversify their investments being the best in the region in the investment climate, transparency and investor protection.
Tarif briefed about the project of Jordan National Financial Center, which will include the Amman Stock Exchange, Jordan Depository Center, a financial studies institute, brokerage firms, investors' gallery and other facilities. The center will be a remarkable financial center in the region, which will provide investors with specialized services according to the latest international standards. In addition, Tarif tackled the new electronic system, which will be adopted by the ASE. The new system is characterized by high efficiency that will improve investment in securities. He also mentioned some future plans such as new financial instruments, a comprehensive marketing strategy and internet trading.
The commissioner in the Jordan Securities Commission, Dr. Abdullrazzaq Bani Hani presented a worksheet about the National Capital Market, in which he talked about the Commission's role in protecting investors, organizing, protecting, improving, and monitoring the securities market. He added that surveillance depends on increasing the technicality of systems and the by-laws of right issues and labor ethics. The JSC is also concerned about fostering disclosure and transparency to provide necessary market information. Besides it imposes penalties on the breaching investors and brokers. It cares about the application of corporate governance, encouraging the mutual funds, continuous investigation on brokerage firms, daily surveillance on trading operations and receiving complaints from investors.
The ASE presented a live trading session in addition to a special section to promote the investment advantages at the ASE to businessmen and investors.
Employees of the ASE Obtain International Professional Certificates
As a part of the ASE's continuous efforts to be in line with the educational and technical developments and to ameliorate the employees efficiency, it supported its employees to obtain international certificates that would improve the working environment and promote the performance. In this regard, Mr. Wasim Haddad, from the Research and International Relations Department, has obtained the Chartered Financial Consultant Certificate (CFC), and Mr. Tareq Abu Al-Haija, from the Surveillance and Inspection Department, has got the Certified Risk Professional Certificate (CRP). Also, Mr. Moyyad Hassan, from the Surveillance and Inspection Department, has got the Certified Management Accountant Certificate (CMA). In addition, Mr. Shadi Abu Al-Haija has passed the second level of the Certified Financial Analyst Certificate (CFA).
A Delegation from Sudan Securities Market Visits the ASE
A delegation from Sudan Securities Market visited Amman Stock Exchange and the Jordan Depository Center. The delegation was briefed about the operations at the ASE and the basic investment principles in the exchange. They also had an overview on the latest legislative and technical developments of Jordan capital market, the trading system of the ASE and its future plans. Finally, they toured a number of brokerage firms and were acquainted about the nature of their work.
A Delegation from HELEX and CSE visits ASE
The CEO of the ASE, Mr. Jalil Tarif, received a delegation of the CEO of the Hellenic Exchanges (HELEX), Mr. Socrates Lazardis and the CEO of Cyprus Stock Exchange (CSE) , Mr. Nondas Metaxas. Mr. Tarif briefed the delegation on the developments of Amman Stock Exchange and the latest technical and legislative developments of Jordan capital market. During the meeting, they discussed means of cooperation between the ASE, HELEX and CSE, particularly in regard to a project of establishing a data network that connects exchanges in Europe, Middle East and Africa. The data network will connect capital markets and exchanges of member countries so as to bring them forward to the world and facilitate the access to these exchanges to the investors. The delegation also met with the deputy chairman of Jordan Securities Commission, Dr. Ahmad Mustafa, and the Deputy CEOs of Amman Stock Exchange and the Securities Depository Center and other officials of the capital market institutions.
Netherlands Ambassador Visits The ASE
he CEO of the ASE, Mr. Jalil Tarif , received the Netherlands Ambassador in Jordan Mrs. Joanna M. van Vliet. During the meeting Mr. Tarif and Mrs.Vleit discussed means of strengthening investment between the two countries and cooperation between the ASE and Euronext Amsterdam. Mr. Tarif briefed the ambassador on the latest developments of Jordan capital market, especially in regard to applying the new version of the electronic trading system at the ASE. The system is the one used in Euronext with the support of the European Union.
A Delegation from Syria Stock Exchange Visits ASE
delegation from Syria Stock Exchange (SSE) visited the ASE. The Deputy CEO, Mr. Nader Azar, received the delegation and briefed them on the latest technical and legislative developments of Jordan Capital Market. The delegation toured the Exchange's departments, facilities and visited some of the financial brokerage firms, the investors' gallery. Also, the delegation visited the Securities Depository Center (SDC) and had a look on the clearing and settlement procedures.
Launching the New Version of the E-Trading System NSC V900
As part of the ASE efforts in developing the technical infrastructure of trading securities and as a preparation to launch the new version of the E-trading system, the ASE held a training program for the brokerage firms. The new trading system aims at developing the trading operations and increasing the system capacity, speed and its efficiency in receiving and processing the orders entered by brokers. Besides, the new system, being more sophisticated, allows the exchange to develop new internal programs for surveillance purposes and instant analysis of market information.
ASE Participates in The First Economic Forum of Irbid
Amman Stock Exchange (ASE) participated in the First Economic Forum of Irbid, which was held in Kempenski Hotel/Amman in the period between 21-23/ June 2008. The Director of the Awareness and Public Relations Department, Mr. Amjad Qudah, gave a speech on the latest developments at the ASE and the role of financial markets in financing economic development in Jordan and providing youth with job opportunities.
The WFE Working Committee Meeting
The ASE, represented by the Director of the Research and International Relations Department, Mr. Sami Hattab, participated in the World Federation of Exchanges (WFE) working committee meeting, which was held in New York City in the period between 25-28/ June 2008.
Several important issues were discussed such as amending the Board elections Rules, the developments of the derivatives markets, analyzing the revenues and expenses of the WFE members, the role of the self-regulating organizations and analyzing a questionnaire on the marketing efforts of the member countries.
In addition, the reports of the different working committee task forces of the Federation were discussed. Moreover, some studies that were conducted by the WFE were discussed. Finally the committee considered the WFE activities during 2008 and the sketches of working committee task forces of 2009.
A Syrian Delegation Visits ASE
The CEO of the ASE, Mr. Jalil Tarif, received a delegation of Master' s degree students/Faculty of Economics from Damascus University/Syria. The deputy CEO, Mr. Nader Azar, briefed the delegation on the latest technical and legislative developments of Jordan Capital Market. The delegation visited some of the financial brokerage firms, the Investor's Gallery and they toured the ASE facilities.
Publishing Free Float Index through the ASE Electronic Trading System
On Sunday, June 8th 2008, Amman Stock Exchange started publishing the stock price index weighted by the free float market capitalization instead of the index weighted by market capitalization, through its electronic trading system, the ticker on the ASE website, the information dissemination screens and data vendors. The ASE has launched the free float index in July 2006 and the index is published in the daily bulletins and daily statistical summary and in the local mass media.
The CEO of the ASE, Jalil Tarif, said that many international stock exchanges and index providers institutions such as S&XP, FTSE GROUP, and Dow Jones Indexes and STOXX have adopted the free float market capitalization weighted index approach.
This index includes the same 100 listed companies at the ASE included in the index weighted by market capitalization. This index reflects the market performance, and it also decreases the effect of the big companies in terms of market capitalization on the index movement. Besides, it gives a chance to small and medium companies to affect the index movement.
The weight of each company in the new index is determined by the market capitalization of its free float shares and the weight of a single company is capped by up to (10%).
This Index is 1000 basic points value as at the end of year 1999, and it was daily calculated from the beginning of year 2000. Comparing the performance of the general index with other indices of the ASE reveals its harmony with these indices. Also, other main and sub sector indices, were calculated on daily basis for the same period. The constituents of this index are revised quarterly.
The ASE in corporation with Dow Jones indices launched (Dow Jones-ASE 100) and it is a wide index that tracks the performance of the largest 100 companies listed at the ASE and is weighted by Free-Float market capitalization. The ASE will adopt Dow Jones ASE 100 to become the official and only index, which will be published through media and the ASE bulletins.
It is worth mentioning that the ASE will continue publishing the price index weighted by market capitalization through its daily bulletins and daily statistics on the ASE website /market performance.
The Companies' First Quarterly Reports for 2008
By virtue of the ASE Listing Directives, all companies listed at the First Market must submit quarterly reports reviewed by their external auditors, which will increase transparency and disclosure in Jordan capital market by providing information to investors on companies' performance, which helps investors in making their investment decisions. The ASE received the first quarterly reports prepared by the companies listed at the First Market.
By the deadline; the number of companies that submitted their reviewed reports were (107) companies, representing (89.2%) of the overall companies listed on the First Market. Thirteen companies did not submit their reports within the time limit, in breach of Article 15(b) of the ASE Listing Directives: Al-Faris National Group For Investment and Export, Jordan Phosphate Mines, Jordan Investment and Finance Bank, Jordan French Insurance, The Holy Land Insurance, The Arab Assurers, Beit Al-Mal Saving and Investment For Housing, United Arab Investors, Dar Al Dawa Development and Investment, Woolen Industries, Rum Aladdin Industries, Arab Pharmaceutical Manufacturing and Arab Aluminium Industry/ARAL.
The ASE circulated the received quarterly reports to all its brokers and investors through the ASE website (Arabic version) 220.127.116.11 in the Circulars and Disclosures / quarterly reports.
Signing an Academic Cooperation Agreement with Yarmouk University
Amman Stock Exchange (ASE) has signed an academic cooperation agreement with Yarmouk University on the purpose of establishing a stock exchange simulation room and training on the ASE e-trading system. The chairman of the ASE board of directors, H.E Mr. Mohammad S. Horani and the president of the Yarmouk University, Dr. Mohammad Abu-Qidees, signed the agreement in the presence of the CEO of the ASE, Mr. Jalil Tarif, the Dean of Economy and Business Management Faculty, Dr. Walid Hmeidat and the Head of Banking and Finance Department, Dr. Mohammed Ajlouni.
The agreement states that the ASE provides a simulation server, a router, specialized trading programs and training the university staff in charge of training the students on the programs and systems. Meanwhile, the university shall provide a simulation and training room and supplying it with technical appliances and connection lines necessary for connecting it with the ASE.
On the margins of signing the agreement, H.E Mr. Horani, inaugurated the simulation and training room in the Banking and Finance Department in the presence of the President of the university, the CEO of the ASE and the university staff. The simulation room is intended to train students and the local community on trading securities and the exchange's operations, in addition to conducting researches on the exchange by professors and the Master's Degree students.
The simulation room is equipped with a main server to operate the electronic trading system, a PC for running the trading session in regard to controlling the time and the stages of the trading sessions, suspending or re-trading securities, changing the securities closing prices and other trading operations. The room also includes twenty PCs that contain the necessary programs of entering orders to the system, which are connected directly to the electronic trading system, thus the students can enter and follow up these orders through a specific program, as well as watch live trading information.
A Military Delegation from the Moroccan Faculty of Defense Graduate Studies
Military Delegation from the Moroccan Faculty of Defense Graduate Studies visited the Jordan capital market institutions. The CEO of the ASE, Mr. Jalil Tarif, briefed the delegation on the operations at the ASE and the basic investment principles in the exchange. He also tackled the latest legislative and technical developments of the Jordan capital market at the legislative, technical and quantitative levels and their impact on enhancing market transparency, liquidity and efficiency.
Public Shareholding Companies' Performance during the year 2007
Amman Stock Exchange received the annual reports for the year 2007 for 227 public shareholding companies, constituting 97% of the total Market Capitalization of the ASE. The results revealed remarkable improvement during the year 2007; the number of companies, which achieved net after-tax profit during 2007, reached 175 companies. The financial statements for the 227 companies revealed a growth in their total assets by the end of the year 2007 by 16.2% compared with the year 2006 reaching JD 48.7 billion and a growth in the shareholders equity by 17.7% reaching JD 11.5 billion.
The net after-tax profit for these companies reached JD 1255.4 million for the year 2007 in comparison with JD 609.6 million for the year 2006, an increase of 40.5% whereas the number of companies which distributed cash dividends reached 94 companies for the year 2007 against 73 companies in 2006.
At the sectoral level, the net after-tax profit for the industrial sector increased to JD 303.3 million for the year 2007 compared with JD 168.5 million for the year 2006, an increase of 84.3%. The financial sector tax profit increased to JD 760.1 million compared with JD 580.1 million for the year 2006, an increase of 31.0% and for the services sector the net profit reached JD 192.0 million compared with JD 147.8 million for the year 2006 an increase of 29.8%.
The net after-tax profit for the financial sector constitutes 60.6% from the total after-tax profit for all sectors whereas the most growing sub-sectors in net post-tax profit were: media, diversified financial services, transportation, real estate, insurance, and mining and extraction industries, as the after-tax profit for these sectors increased by 732.3%, 699.1%, 498.1%, 242.1%, 156.8% and 125.8% respectively .
A Workshop on Activating the Role of Media in Corporate Governance Issues
Amman Stock Exchange, represented by the CEO, Mr. Jalil Tarif participated in a workshop, which was held in Cairo last month. The workshop aimed at activating the media role in acquainting people with corporate governance issues. In the closing session, Tarif delivered a presentation in which h accented the importance of applying the corporate governance principles because of their positive effect on companies' performance. He said that Jordan has reached a big stage of applying corporate governance principles.
Besides, Jordan has built a new culture of disclosure that was reflected on the market efficiency and its ability to attract local and foreign investments as the non-Jordanian investments exceeded 50% of the market capitalization. In addition, the market has achieved a remarkable growth and liquidity.
The workshop was attended by fifteen journalists from Jordan, Palestine, Lebanon and Egypt.
The Romanian Ambassador Visits The ASE
The CEO of the ASE, Mr. Jalil Tarif , received the Romanian Ambassador in Jordan Mr. Radu Onofrei. During the meeting Mr. Tarif and Mr. Onofrei discussed means of strengthening investments between the two countries and cooperation between the ASE and the Bucharest Stock Exchange (BSE). Mr. Tarif briefed the Ambassador on the latest developments on the Jordan Capital Market.
The ASE participated in the First Youth Media Forum
Amman Stock Exchange represented by the CEO, Mr.Jalil Tarif, participated in the First Youth Media Forum, which was held in Amman in the period between 7-8 April 2008. Mr. Tarif presented a worksheet entitled “Media's Role in Raising Awareness in Securities Industry” . In his presentation, Tarif pointed to the role of media in acquainting people with the challenges encountered by the economy, and in providing information about the economic situation. He also praised the effectiveness of media in attracting foreign investments and enhancing the capital market performance.
Academic Day in the University of Jordan
Amman Stock Exchange and the Business Administration Faculty at the University of Jordan have held an Academic Day in the presence of the CEO of the ASE, Mr. Jalil Tarif, the Dean of the Business Administration Faculty, Dr. Bashir Al-Zou'bi and the Head of the Finance Department, Dr. Nidal Al-Fayoumi .
A number of awareness lectures were delivered concentrating on the basic topics relevant to Jordan capital market and securities trading in addition to a glimpse on the main concepts related to the capital market including securities, bonds, mutual funds, right issues and corporate governance. Also, ASE presented two live trading sessions and answered the students' enquiries.
The CEO of the ASE, Mr. Jalil Tarif said that holding such lectures goes in line with the ASE's policy of strengthening its ties with the local community and spreading the investment culture and raising awareness among citizens and investors. Mr. Tarif also stressed the important role of the capital market in increasing investments and creating job opportunities, which supports the economic growth in the kingdom and attracts local and foreign investments as the non- Jordanian investments reached about (50%) of the ASE market capitalization.
The event witnessed a remarkable attendance as the number of participants reached about (500) students.
Student Delegations Visit ASE
A number of student delegations from the Syrian National Academy for Management , The Arab Academy For Banking and Financial Sciences/Syria branch, Tishreen University from Syria and Tafila Technical University visited the ASE. The students were briefed about the mode of operations at the ASE and capital market institutions. They also visited the investors' gallery at Housing Bank complex and toured in a number of brokerage firms.
A Delegation from The Jordanian Royal College For National Defense
In line with the policy of capital market institutions of meeting various parties of the society, the Chairman of the JSC, as well as the Chief Executive Officers of the JSC, ASE and the SDC, met with a delegation from The Jordanian Royal College For National Defense. Mr. Jalil Tarif , the CEO of the ASE , briefed the delegation on the nature work of the ASE and the latest legislative and technical developments on the Jordan Capital Market .
ASE General Assembly 9th Meeting
On March 19th, 2008 the ASE held its 9th General Assembly meeting, which was chaired by H.E. Mr. Mohammad S. AL-Hourani, Chairman of the Board of Directors and with the presence of members of the Board, the CEO of the ASE and the Jordan Securities Commission (JSC) representative. During the meeting, the Board of Directors reported on ASE's accomplishments and activities and they discussed future plans. Furthermore, the ASE auditor presented his audited report of and the financial statements of the fiscal year ending on December 31st, 2007 were endorsed.
2nd Jordan Capital Market Road show in London
The Jordan Securities Commission (JSC), the Amman Stock Exchange (ASE), and the Securities Depository Center (SDC), in cooperation with the London Stock Exchange (LSE) and the Bank of New York Mellon (BNYM) held, for the second year, the Jordan Capital Market Road show at the London Stock Exchange, March 27 – 28 March 2008, with the participation of 10 major Jordanian companies representing financial and industrial institutions and the Executive Privatization Commission, The conference was attended by 80 investment managers representing the largest investment companies and funds in Britain that invest in the Middle East and North Africa.
Jordanian delegation met officials from Bank of New York Mellon, London office. Michael Cole-Fontayn, the BNYM representative welcomed the Jordanian delegation and expressed pleasure of welcoming the Jordan Capital Market institutions and the Jordanian companies to the bank offices in London and expressed the bank interest in furthering the cooperation between the BNYM and the Jordan Capital Market. He pointed out the importance of holding such meetings, which provide opportunities for Jordanian companies and British investors to meet and explore joint investment opportunities. He also indicated that British investors are becoming more interested in investing in emerging markets, especially in the Middle East. As part of the road show, t he BNYM presented a number of important technical issues of interest to Jordanian companies related to Capital Raising Using Global Depository Receipts, Financial reporting pre and post IPO, Valuing Companies before an IPO and Communicating with the investment community.
The administration of LSE honored the Jordanian delegation and invited Dr. Bassam Saket, Executive Chairman of the JSC, to open the electronic trading day on March 28, 2008 in the presence of the chairmen of the boards and executive directors of the ASE and SDC, as well as a number of Capital Market officials and all participants from Jordanian companies.
Dr. Bassam Saket, pointed out the importance of conducting such meetings that offer real opportunities for Jordanian companies to meet and present their investment opportunities to British investors and he indicated that Jordan follows a proactive policy of communicating with the world rather than waiting for others to come to Jordan. In addition, he said that Jordan enjoys a safe investment climate that offers high returns, as well as a free economy that offers investment opportunities to build major partnerships. He outlined in his presentation, the most important developments in the Jordanian market, the JSC duties in enforcing the law and protecting investors and the progress achieved in terms of disclosure and transparency in the market.
Dr. Fayez Tarawneh, Chairman of the United Arab Investors Company, said that Jordan started to implement the economic reform program in 1989 successfully, despite the instability in the region. He also spoke of the progress of the Jordanian economy, the privatization program, and recent economic indicators, mainly the growth levels achieved by the Jordanian economy in the past years. He added that political and economic reform in Jordan is an ongoing process that reinforces its economic and political position in the region and raises its competitiveness in attracting foreign investments in a safe and stable environment.
CEO of the ASE, Jalil Tarif, reviewed investment opportunities in the Jordanian capital market and the latest legislative and technological developments at the ASE. He stressed that the ASE succeeded in attracting more foreign investments, as a result foreign ownership exceeded 50% of the market capitalization. This high ownership, explained Mr. Tarif, is due to the confidence in the market that enjoys complete freedom in the movement of capital and no taxes on capital gains or cash dividends.
CEO of the SDC, Samir Jaradat, spoke of the important work done by the SDC, such as settlement and the transfer of ownership in a safe and documented manner. He pointed out that the SDC adopts international best practice in this area, which enhances confidence in the Jordanian capital market.
Mr. Abdel Rahman Al Khatib, CEO of the Executive Privatization Commission (EPC) reviewed in his presentation the successes of the privatization process, the most recent of which was the privatization of Royal Jordanian Airlines. He also pointed out the future privatization projects on the (EPC) agenda, namely the privatization of the Jordan Post Company, the Jordan Petroleum Refinery Company, and Khirbet Al Samra water treatment plant.
Representatives of Jordanian companies also gave presentations in which they presented their companies and reviewed their latest projects and future plans, and their effect on the companies' profits. These companies, which represent 50% in volume of the Jordan capital market, include the Arab Bank, the Jordan Ahli Bank, United Arab Investors Co., Tameer Jordan, Middle East Complex for Engineering, Electronics, and Heavy Industries Co, Jordan Investment Trust, First Jordan Investment, Al-Sanabel International for Islamic Financial Investment, Arab International for Education and Investment, and the Arab Potash Company.
It should be noted that some of the investment companies and funds that participated in the event are listed among the 20 largest investment companies in the world, namely:
Addleshaw Goddard, Blackrock, Blakeney, BNP Paribas, Citigroup, Deephaven, Deka, Deutsche Bank, EFG-Hermes, Ernest Bateman Photography, Event Force, Fidelity, First Equity, Frankfurt Trust, GLG, Goldman Sachs, Hermitage Fund, Invesco, JPMorgan, JPMorgan Chase, JPMorgan Depositary Bank, Kudu, Lehman, Liberty Square Asset Management, Mango Capital, Mena Capital, Merrill Lynch, Mondrian, Montpelier, Nomura, Och-Ziff, Pantera Capital, Pictet, Polunin, Prince St Capital, Schroders, Societe Generale, T.Rowe Price, The Bank of New York Mellon, White and Case, and Zenith Corporate Finance
For more information on the conference please visit the electronic site of the London Stock Exchange, which published all the working papers presented by Jordanian participants.
ASE Participates in The Third Jordan Economic Forum
Amman Stock Exchange participated in the third Jordan Economic Forum, which was held in King Hussein Bin Talal Convention Center, Dead Sea in the period between 2-3/ March, 2008. The CEO of the ASE, Mr. Jalil Tarif gave a speech on the role of banks and financial markets in financing economic development in Jordan.
The International monetary Fund (IMF) has praised the developments of Jordan capital market after it made a field visit to Amman Stock Exchange (ASE). The IMF report highlighted the important role of the capital market institutions in supporting the economy. It also praised the procedures taken by the ASE to publish the Dow Jones ASE 100 Index, which would foster the growth of the capital market in Jordan.
Dow Jones Indexes And Amman Stock Exchange Launched New Index
Dow Jones Indexes, a leading global index provider, and Amman Stock Exchange (ASE), launched the Dow Jones ASE 100 Index on February 14, 2008. The index is a broad benchmark index that tracks the performance of the 100 largest stocks listed at the ASE based on free-float market capitalization.
The Dow Jones ASE 100 Index was developed to meet the demand on products based on indexes at the Amman Stock Exchange and to eventually substitute the ASE general price index. The Dow Jones ASE 100 is expected to further enhance transparency, visibility and accessibility of the performance of the Amman Stock Exchange for local, regional and international market participants by applying Dow Jones Indexes' well known and widely used index methodology.
The CEO of the ASE, Mr. Jalil Tarif, said that the ASE has its own indexes since 1980, and introduced new indexes based on free-float market capitalization. He believes that the launching of the Dow Jones ASE 100 index will enhance the ASE exposure to international investors. Foreign investors own more than 49% of the ASE market capitalization.”
The index universe for the Dow Jones ASE 100 Index is defined as all companies domiciled in Jordan, with their primary listing at the Amman Stock Exchange. Eliminated from the index universe are companies, which belong to the bottom 1% by full market capitalization, and companies, which do not trade more than 33.33% of all trading days per quarter. The largest 100 companies remaining by full market capitalization will be included in the index. The Dow Jones ASE 100 Index is weighted by free-float market capitalization. Weights of individual stocks are capped at 10% in order to prevent the index from being dominated by individual securities.
The top five companies in the index by free float market capitalization are: Arab Bank, Housing Bank for Trading & Finance, Jordan Electric Power, Taameer Jordan Holdings and United Arab Investors .The Dow Jones ASE 100 Index, which is calculated in U.S. dollar (USD) and Jordanian Dinar (JOD), is reviewed quarterly in March, June, September and December. Companies deleted in between quarterly reviews will be replaced at the next review date. As of January 31, 2007, the Dow Jones ASE 100 Index (USD) gained 269.83% back tested from its base date, December 31, 1999 1 . Daily index history is available back to December 31, 1999. The full list of companies, including weighting and values of the Dow Jones ASE 100 Index, is available on www.djindexes.com .
ASE start publishing a new financial ratio
Amman Stock Exchange started publishing a new financial ratio called Price to Operating Cash Flow (P/OCF) through its Monthly Statistical Bulletin by the beginning of 2008. This ratio is mainly used in evaluation the quality of profits for the listed companies at the ASE. It basically depends on the operational cash flow, which comes from the main activities of the company. It is also important in determining the profits quality and liquidity of the companies.
The importance of this ratio comes from the fact that the companies' income statement contains unrealized gains and losses mainly the fair value adjustments that effect the company's net profit. Whereas these items are excluded when calculating the company's operating cash flow. This gives the investor a clear image about the company.
This ratio is calculated by dividing the market capitalization of the company by the operational cash flow, and it is compared with the (P/E) Ratio. A significant difference between the two ratios is a signal for investors to study the components of the companies' income statement before taking the investment decision.
It is worth mentioning that the investor should consider this ratio with other financial ratios in analyzing the companies' performance and the investor shouldn't take the investment decision without comparing it with the other ratios.
This ratio could be negative but it does not necessary mean a bad signal, in this case the investor should go and study the components of the cash flow statement to know the reason for this negative value of the operating cash flow.
Also, publishing this ratio comes as a result of the efforts of the ASE to make the data available for investors and those who are interested in Jordan capital market, which help them in analyzing the companies situation.
An Interview with the CEO of the ASE
The CEO of Amman Stock Exchange, Mr. Jalil Tarif, participated in the 6 th Developing Markets Forum, which was organized by Cairo and Alexandria Stock Exchanges in cooperation with the World Federation of Exchanges (WFE) in Cairo in the period between 24-26 February 2008. In a presentation, Tarif said that Arab financial markets have made big achievements in terms of disclosure, transparency and infrastructure. Tarif also said international changes in world financial markets make it a must for Arab markets to be more in line with world criteria. He also set the challenges facing Arab financial markets, represented in volatility that exceed those of world markets. He attributed the volatility to factors related to supply and demand. He said Arab financial markets are small, only $1.4 trillion, which is less than one per cent of the volume of international exchange.
On his assessment of investment in the Arab region, Tarif said, “I believe some Arab financial markets have restrictions on investment and on the movement of foreign currencies. And these are restrictions that have to be removed to encourage foreign investment. Fear from foreign investment is unjustifiable since foreign investments have positive aspects that should be encouraged and made use of through offering attractive and encouraging competition atmospheres.”
Tarif said some Arab markets have managed to attract big foreign investment, as is the case in Jordan where foreign investment represents more than half the market; non-Jordanians own $15-17 billion. “And this is what we have to work to encourage, especially long-term investments.”
Tarif stressed the need to focus on issues of awareness and education for their economic and social importance so that all sectors of the society are aware of the importance of investment and exchanges, which have become an important tool of development and attracting investments and providing job opportunities.
Mr. Jalil Tarif, the CEO of the ASE, received the International Monetary Fund ) IMF ( delegation that visited Jordan. During the meeting with the delegation, Mr. Tarif presented the latest developments at the legislative, technical and quantitative levels and its impact on enhancing market transparency, liquidity and efficiency. Mr. Tarif asserted that the ASE had achieved remarkable performance during recent years, resulting in an increase in revenues, in trading volume as well as in market capitalization that exceeded JD (29.2) billion in the year 2007 that represents (289%) of the GDP
A Delegation of the University of Michigan visits ASE
A delegation of graduate studies students of the University of Michigan visited the ASE. The head of Awareness and Public Relations Department, Mr. Amjad Al-Qudah, and the head of the IT Department, Mr. Mohammed Al-Khatib received the delegation and briefed them on the latest technical and legislative developments of the ASE.
Jordan Capital Market Infrastructure Project
Amman Stock Exchange, represented by the CEO of the ASE, Mr.Jalil Tarif, participated in the meetings of the steering committee of the infrastructure project for the Jordan Capital Market institutions. The Head of the steering committee , the commissioner in the Jordan Securities Commission, Dr. Abed-alrazzaq Bani Hani, the CEO of the Securities Depository Center, Mr. Samir Jaradat, and a number of employees of Jordan Capital Market institutions also attended the meetings, which were held in Paris and London. The committee met the CEO of Atos Euronext (ASMS) and officials from UNIX Stock Exchange and Derivatives Stock Exchange in London (Liffe). The committee discussed with French officials the stages of the new trading project (NSC V900), which will be implemented during this year, in addition to the stages of connecting the trading system to the existing settlement system.
Exchange Traded Funds Forum in Muscat / Oman
The ASE, represented by Mr. Ahmed Al-Saideen from the Surveillance and Inspection department and Miss Hiyam Mustafa from the Research and International Relations department, participated in Exchange Traded Funds Forum (ETFs) which was held by Muscat Securities Market in cooperation with Dow Jones Indexes in Muscat / Oman in the period between January 14-15, 2008. The Forum handled the concept of the ETFs as a new financial instrument. It concentrated on its advantages such as high liquidity and risk minimizing by diversification. The Forum also tackled issues pertaining the difficulties of application such as the need for more than one market maker and the importance of rules and regulations that regulate the reciprocal relations between the different parties.
Student Delegation visits ASE
The deputy CEO of the ASE Mr. Nader Azar received a student delegation from Balqa' University/ Aqaba College . Mr. Azar briefed the delegation on nature of the work at the ASE and the basic investment principles in the exchange. He also tackled the latest legislative and technical developments of the Jordan Capital Market.
The Performance of the ASE During the Year 2007
The Price Index of Amman Stock Exchange weighted by Market Capitalization witnessed a remarkable growth as it closed at 7519 points by the end of 2007 compared with 5518 points by the end of 2006, a 36% increase. The ASE Price Index Weighted by Free-Float Shares stood at 3675 points by the end of year 2007 compared with the year 2006 closing at 3014 points an increase by 22%. This came as a result of the increase in the Services Sector index by 34%, the Industry Sector index by 31%, and the Financial Sector index by 14%.
It is worth mentioning that the Media, Mining and Extraction Industries, Utilities and Energy, Technology and Communications sub-sectors were the top best performers, their price indexes increased by 81%, 70%, 59%, and 38% respectively. The Health Care Services, Pharmaceutical and Medical Industries, Tobacco and Cigarettes were the main declined sub-sectors, their price indexes decreased by 27%, 9%, and 3% respectively.
Trading value reached JD12.3 billion a decrease by 13% compared to the year 2006. The number of shares traded increased by 9% compared with the year 2006, reaching 4.5 billion shares, and the number of executed transactions increased by 1% compared with the year 2006, reaching 3.5 million transactions.
The turnover ratio for the ASE decreased to 91% compared with 101% for the year 2006. Number of listed companies at the ASE increased to 245 companies compared with 227 companies by the end of 2006.
The ASE market capitalization reached JD 29.2 billion by the end of year 2007, an increase of 39% over the end of 2006, representing 289% of the GDP, which is considered to be a high ratio on the international level, this reflects the importance the ASE's role in the national economy .
By the end of the year 2007, the net investment of non-Jordanian investors increased by JD 466 million, compared to JD 181 million during 2006. As a result, non-Jordanian investors ownership in the ASE market capitalization increased to 48.9% by the end of the year 2007 compared with 45.5% by the end of 2006.
Index Sample for Year 2008
The ASE has conducted a review of listed stocks at the ASE to decided the year 2008 sample for its General Price Index to reflect the developments of the trading activities of the listed companies to enhance the index ability to reflect the changes of the stocks prices. The companies are selected according to their trading activity during the last quarter for the year 2007. The new sample has been put into effect as of January 2 nd , 2008.
The constituents of the ASE General Price Index sample represent 100 companies of the most active companies according to their trading at the ASE; these companies constitute (90%) of the total market capitalization of the ASE and (87%) of the total trading value for the last quarter of the year 2007 and (80%) of the total number of traded shares at the same period. The weight of the financial sector in the ASE General Price Index Weighted by Free-Float index is (65.3%), the service sector weight is (16.9%), and the industrial sector is (17.8%).
As for the sub-sectors indices, all the companies listed at the ASE were selected for these indices; whereas the companies which are suspended from trading and others which are under liquidation were excluded. The market capitalization for the sub-sectors indices' sample constitutes (98%) of the total market capitalization of the ASE.
The ASE coordinated with Dow Jones Company in selecting the sample by applying the same rebalancing criteria. Therefore, the ASE and Dow Jones adopted the same sample on which the ASE General Price Index and the DJ ASE 100 Index will be calculated on. It is to be mentioned that the Dow Jones ASE 100 Index was launched by the end of the last year. The share price index sample is published on the ASE website on the Internet on the link:
Company Guide for 2007
The ASE finished the Twentieth Issue of the Public Shareholding Companies Guide for the year 2007, the guide contains general information for the listed and the non-listed companies at the ASE such as: the companies address, members of the boards of directors, main shareholders, and the shareholders structure in addition to companies auditors, legal counselors and number of employees.
The guide also contains the financial information for the companies that are related to the balance sheet, income statement and cash flow for the years 2005 and 2006.
This guide was prepared in a different manner compared with the previous issues in the way that it took into consideration the new sectoral classification of the listed companies at the ASE that includes three main sectors and twenty-three sub sectors, which facilitates the financial analysis for a company and comparison with similar companies and sector it belongs to.
The guide also includes cumulative data for each sub-sector and main sector to help the researchers and analyzers to compare the companies' performance with the sectoral performance. This guide comes as a result of the ASE continuing efforts for promoting its services and the information that are presented to investors, researchers and the public in general.
To make it easy reaching for investors and public; the ASE loaded the company guide on its website. The companies' financial information is for the years 2005 and 2006. To whom who need to get the financial information for the previous years, it can be found in the Library and Publications Section/historical information/company guide, on the website which include all the issues of the companies' guide since the year 1993.
The CFA Jordan's annual Awards Ceremony
The CEO of the ASE, Mr. Jalil Tarif, participated in the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) Jordan's Annual Awards Ceremony, which was held in the Four Seasons Hotel on December 15 th, 2007 . The (CFA) Institute is specialized in setting the highest standards of ethics, education and professional excellence. Mr. Tarif presented the certificates for a number of CFA graduates.
In his speech, Mr. Tarif stressed the fact that the ASE is keen on gathering the distinguished qualifications and that it concentrates on holding courses to train a highly- qualified cadre of brokers and financial advisors. Besides, the ASE holds courses for the investors to raise awareness of the importance and the way of investing at ASE. He also pointed to the number of the brokerage firms licensed by the Jordan Securities Commission (JSC). They reached 66 firms with 405 licensed financial brokers working in these firms.
A lecture in Queen Aliaa' community College
pon the invitation of Queen Aliaa' community College, the ASE, represented by Mr. Amjad Al-Qudah, head of Awareness and Public Relations Department, participated in a speech entitled "ASE's Recent Developments and Future Outlook" which was held in the college on December 6, 2007. Mr. Al-Qudah briefed the attendants on the latest development on the Jordan Capital Market.