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Aramco’s Opening Rally Comes To An End

Shares in Saudi Aramco dipped 3.27 percent on Thursday as the oil giant was hit by profit-taking, ending the trading week in Saudi Arabia among the top losers today, and wiping out a third of the rally at the start of the blockbuster initial public offering (IPO).

Aramco’s shares underperformed on Thursday both the Tadawul All Share Index (TASI) which closed up 0.46 percent, and the MSCI Tadawul 30 Index which gained 0.8 percent.  

The stock of the world’s largest oil company dropped on Thursday for a third consecutive trading day.

Aramco is now down by a cumulative 6 percent compared to the highest closing price it reached this past Monday.

On Thursday, Aramco’s shares closed at US$9.46 (35.50 Saudi riyals), down from last week’s closing price of US$9.80 (36.80 riyals). The highest closing price in just over a week of trading was registered on Monday, at US$10.12 (38.00).

Despite three consecutive days of declines, Saudi Aramco’s shares are still 11 percent higher than the final offer price of the IPO.

“Aramco shares entered a healthy corrective wave driven by taking profit and taking advantage of the ample liquidity after listing in the Saudi index and MSCI Emerging Markets index,” Mohamed Zidan, Chief Market Strategist for ThinkMarkets in Dubai, told Gulf News, commenting on Aramco’s performance this week.

On its second day of trading last week, Saudi Aramco hit the US$2-trillion valuation that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has been after for years, but analysts say that size is not everything and governance issues will continue to weigh on the Kingdom’s oil giant.

As Aramco began its life as a public company, some analysts are still wondering how the Kingdom’s oil giant will ease foreign investors’ concerns about transparency and corporate governance risk, considering that Saudi Arabia’s rulers will continue to call the shots.

By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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