Jeddah, Asharq Al-Awsat-A lack of sufficient education and training in dealing with the stock market is the main cause of grave mistakes committed by female Saudi investors of the stock market.
Yousuf Qonstanteny, executive director of the center of experts of the stock exchange, took part in a seminar that was organized by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Jeddah, which was entitled, “All you need to know about the local and international stock market.” During the seminar that was attended by numerous Saudi women of various social spectrums, Dr Qonstanteny asserted, “there are ten major mistakes that are committed by investors of the stock market which in most cases lead to major losses.” He highlighted that other reasons for major losses include, “the lack of a clear strategy for investment, the lack of diversity in stocks, the borrowing of huge amounts of money with insufficient knowledge of investment and the misconception of gaining large amounts of money within a short time span. Other reasons include that there is intolerance when a loss has incurred, a lack of usage of developed facilities and programs. In addition, “many investors choose inadequate advisors or mediators and have too much confidence in the market, which leads to drastic consequences,” Dr Qonstanteny said.
The conference tackled the most basic and most important information for any investor in the stock market. The seminar also referred to technical matters and responded to frequent questions concerning the future of the stock market, especially following the recent crash in Saudi Arabia
The vast number of participants of the seminar reflected on how to increase the interest of Saudi women to invest in the stock market. Participants included women from all over the Saudi spectrum such as businesswomen, students, housewives, teachers and employees of various fields. The discourse of stocks and shares brought together these women of differing social backgrounds.
Controversial issues were discussed on the sidelines of the seminar especially concerning female trading in the stock market. Whilst some argued that taking part in the trading of shares in the designated halls in Saudi banks for women “would be the key to a number of other opportunities,” Aisha Al-Sebyany argues that this participation would take up valuable time that should be spent with the family.” She adds, “Personally, I monitor the progress of the stock market via my computer at home. I feel comfortable at home with my children.”
The stock market flourished after there were a number of changes made by the Custodian of the two holy mosques, King Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud such as foreign residents being allowed to invest directly in the stock market, the nominal rates of stocks to be reduced and research concerning these decisions to be carried out. Furthermore, Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal also suggested giving 30% of the Kingdom’s company shares for trading in the stock market. Despite this progress, attending investors and businesswomen approached these steps with caution and questioned the effects of these changes on them.
Many of the women who participated in the seminar decided to refrain from investing in the stock market until they had received the basic expertise about it. Qonstanteny who had warned attendees about such a step and the potential consequences endorsed this decision.
The seminar was held as part of a number of conferences organized by the chamber of commerce and the Sayyeda Khadija Bint Khowaylid Center to spread knowledge on the stock market and the nature of investment.