A crocus in Iraq

It is not the season for crocuses, the harbingers of spring and thus of new life, but we seem to have had one push its head up last week.  The Baghdad Stock Exchange trades twice a week.  In its first session of last week, on July 10, the ISX, the Baghdad Stock Exchange Index, scooted up 11%, a very large move for one day, even in a secondary and illiquid market like Baghdad.  Was this a fluke?  It doesn't appear so, since it was confirmed by slightly higher prices n the second weekly trading session on July 12.  Is there any significance to this move?  I think so.  The move last week brings the ISX back to its level of February 20, 2006.  Does this date ring a bell?  It is two days before the Golden Mosque of Samarra was demolished by al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI), essentially setting off AQI's war against the Iraqi umma under the guise of revolutionary assistance to the Sunni minority.  From January to February last year, the ISX dropped...(Read Full Post)