Netherlands-based Amstel Securities Private Ltd. says the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange is the worst performing African bourse having registered a decline in stock prices of some 7.5 percent from 2009 to 2010.
Press reports quoted the research and financial advisory company as saying the ZSE index has retreated 22 percent to around 130 points from an all-time high of close to 170 points largely due to political uncertainty.
Amstel said the bourse and its poorly rated stocks have also been hit by the controversial indigenization program which proposes to put a controlling share of equity in large companies in the hands of indigenous black investors.
It said the ZSE distantly trails its counterparts in Kenya, Uganda, Botswana, Ghana, South Africa and Nigeria.
The Zimbabwe stock market index registered an all-time high of 167 points in mid-January before plunging to 129 points in March following the publication of indigenization regulations.
Economic and political commentator Bekithemba Mhlanga told VOA Studio 7 reporter Gibbs Dube that the uncertainty as to Zimbabwe's political future - its unity government is badly divided and a constitutional revision exercise has been going from one crisis to another - is paralyzing the stock exchange. “People are concerned about the future of the inclusive government and the current harsh economic and political environment," Mhlanga said.