On a monthly basis, Frontier Market News will look at the best and worst performing Frontier Markets. Here’s the list for October 2019.
For comparative purposes, the MSCI Frontier Market Index’s return in October 2019 was +0.8%.
Best Performing Frontier Markets
1st – Argentina (18.84%)
Argentina’s MERVAL Index posted a very impressive 18.8% gain in October, eclipsing other trailing emerging economies and ranking it as the best performing Frontier Market over the course of the month.
On a micro level, three companies posted gains of 50% or above: Grupo Financiero (60.7%); Aluar Aluminio (54.2%) and Ternium (50.0%). Other strong performers include Central Puerto (29.4%) and YPF (26.6), while EMP Distribution was the only company to post a loss after declining by 2%.
The biggest news to come out of Argentina in October was the result of the election which saw incumbent Mauricio Macri suffer a defeat against left-leaning Alberto Fernández. Time will tell if the new president will improve the international investing community’s view on Argentina, as well as convincing index compilers FTSE and S&P that it should be upgraded to an Emerging Market, something that MSCI did earlier in the year.
2nd – Kenya (8.69%)
Kenya’s stock market placed second in October after recording an increase of 8.7%, primarily due to the excellent performance in the share price of Kenya Airways, which rose by just over 25%.
The market jumped during the final days of the month after President Uhuru Kenyatta decided to remove a cap on interest rates. As a result, the share prices of companies in the banking sector also soared as the likes of Equity Holdings Plc (24.1%), KCB Group (23.3%), Co-Operative Bank of Kenya (22.3%) and Barclays Bank of KEnya (20.9) all ended the month with gains in excess of 20% in their share values.
3rd – Namibia (5.32%)
Namibia’s stock market continued its recovery last month after it posted a 5.3% gain.
Mediclinic International was the best performing stock on the bourse, recording a 15.1% rise on the back of improved earnings data as revenue for the six months ended September 30th were 9% higher.
Standard Bank Namibia is also going public and will list 16% of its shares on the Namibian Stock Exchange on Friday 15th November.
Special Mentions: Tanzania (4.78%); Sri Lanka (4.48%); Kazakhstan (3.64%); Lithuania (1.63%)
Worst Performing Frontier Markets
1st – Mongolia (-5.75%)
The worst performing Frontier Market in October 2019 was Mongolia as the stock market fell by just shy of 5.8% over the course of the month. Mongolian Mortgage Corp lost almost a quarter of its share value in the space of a month.
There were only two companies on the exchange that enjoyed increases in their share prices: Esgii Gutal and Ulsin Ih Delguur.
2nd – Bangladesh (-5.38%)
A bearish trend in the last three months continued into October as Bangladesh’s Dhaka Stock Exchange contracted by 5.4% as investors demanded that the government to investigate corruption and irregularities by the regulator, Investment Corporation of Bangladesh and other stock exchange members.
3rd – Nigeria (-4.60%)
Completing the Top 3 worst performers was Nigeria’s bourse after recording a 4.6% fall. The main reason for the decline was the introduction of a new share pricing rule.
Guinness Nigeria was the worst performing company on the stock exchange as its share price fell by 30% after recording a loss of N205 million in the nine months ended September 30th, compared to a profit of N7.7 billion for the same period last year.
Special Mentions: Jamaica (-4.56%); Lebanon (-4.01%); Ghana (-2.46%); Bulgaria (-2.41%)