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Egypt stocks oust colombia’s as year’s worst on dollar drain

There’s nothing new about Egypt’s dollar shortage. What’s different now is it’s battering the stock market.
11.07.15 | Source: Bloomberg Business

Egypt’s EGX 30 Index overtook Colombia’s benchmark gauge of equities on Wednesday to become the world’s worst performer this year after the government barred Egyptian investors from acquiring foreign currency by buying shares locally and selling them abroad. Proceeds must now be collected in Egyptian pounds. Commercial International Bank Egypt SAE, which makes up almost 40 percent of the index, tumbled 12 percent since the government limited the trade on June 29 through Wednesday.

Egypt has struggled with a foreign-currency shortage since the 2011 Arab Spring protests sent investors and tourists fleeing. The new rule, which adds to a dollar-deposit limit aimed at fighting black-market trading, coincided with the nation’s first political assassination in decades and the Greek austerity vote that’s fueled a slide in emerging-market stocks.