Source: BI-ME , Author: Moussa Ahmad
Posted: 14-07-2008

INTERNATIONAL. Stocks deemed to comply with Islamic law delivered returns of 3.61% during the second quarter of 2008 according to Standard & Poor’s, the world’s leading index provider.

Equity markets around the world have experienced a turbulent start to 2008, with the S&P World BMI falling by 1.49% in second quarter on a total return basis. However the S&P BMI Global Shariah Index delivered positive returns over the same period. Financial stocks, whose poor performance has affected other indices, are largely excluded from Shariah Indices as they do not comply with Islamic law, and Shariah investors benefited from this screening during the second quarter.

Mirroring trends in the broader world equities markets, figures from S&P’s Global Benchmark Shariah Index Series show that Energy was the best performing sector within the Shariah-compliant universe in second quarter 2008, with gains of 18.90%. Materials followed closely behind with returns of 10.60% whilst Shariah-compliant stocks in the Utilities, IT and Healthcare sectors also posted modest gains.

On a country-basis, equity markets in Argentina delivered the highest returns for investors in Shariah-compliant stocks in second quarter, returning 40.68%, whilst stocks in the Philippines fared the worst with falls of 22.55%.

S&P’s Global Benchmark Shariah Index Series covers 52 developed and emerging markets as well as ten GICS (Global Industry Classification Standard) sectors. It is part of S&P’s family of Shariah-compliant indices, designed to offer a comprehensive set of Islamic investment solutions for both benchmarking and investing activity.

S&P’s Shariah Indices are screened by Ratings Intelligence Partners, an independent Kuwait-based consulting company, which collaborates with the S&P Index Committee to apply a set of independent and objective guidelines for the day-to-day maintenance of each Shariah index. Standard & Poor’s Shariah Indices undergo sector and accounting-based screens that exclude businesses that offer products and services which are considered unacceptable or non-compliant according to Shariah-law.

Note: Standard & Poor’s Index Services, the world’s leading index provider, maintains a wide variety of investable and benchmark indices to meet an array of investor needs. Its family of indices includes the S&P 500, an index with US$1.32 trillion invested and US$4.91 trillion benchmarked, and the S&P Global 1200, a composite index comprised of seven regional and country headline indices.

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