Muscat Securities Market

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Muscat Securities Market
Founded 1988
Headquarters Muscat, Oman
Key People Chairman Hassan Ali Jawad
Products MSM 30 share index,

The Muscat Securities Market, in gulf-state Oman, is one of the Middle East's smaller securities exchanges and its market capitalization of almost $17 billion is dwarfed by regional exchange giants in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Qatar, despite growing steadily in recent years. The exchange's benchmark share index, the MSM 30, rebounded in 2009 after a disastrous 2008 that snapped several years of strong growth in both market cap and listed securities.


The Muscat Securities Market was established in 1988 as a govenment entity, initially charged with both establishing and regulating the Omani markets. Ten years later its functions were separated into an exchange called the Muscat Securities Market (MSM), and a regulator, the Oman Capital Market Authority (CMA).[1] At mid-2009 the MSM's market capitalization stood at $16.9 billion, well below the Saudi Stock Exchange at $287.5 billion, the Kuwait Stock Exchange at $122.3 billion and the Qatar Exchange at $74.7 billion.[2]

MSM's benchmark index, the free-float, value-weighted MSM 30, began in 1992 with its base date of January 1, 1990 and consists of the 30 most liquid stocks on the market with provisions to admit smaller companies.[3] The MSM later added a Banks and Investment Index, an Industry Index and a Service and Insurance Index, which are also made up of the top 30 value-weighted companies in each sector.

After losing half its value in 2008 in the aftermath of that year's global financial meltdown, the Muscat Securities Market bounced back in 2009 with a 17% growth in total market capitalization, well above last year's regional average of just under 12%.[4]

Key people[edit]

MSM Chairman Hassan Ali Jawad has an extensive background in the Omani securities industry as a trader, broker and former managing partner of the country's dominant brokerage, Muscat-based United Securities. Under his leadership United was named best brokerage service in the Middle East by global investment-industry magazine World Finance.[5] He also serves on the board of several listed Omani companies.

Latest news[edit]

MSM has shown signs of continuing that recovery with a strong performace in January 2010 on the back of increased 2009 profits at the exchange's largest member by market cap, cellular-telephone provider Omantel.[6] In late 2009 an analyst at United Securities, where MSM Chairman Hassan Ali Jawad is still a director,[7] told Reuters that the firm expected the Omani markets to perform "much better" in 2010.[8]