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Shariah Guidelines for Trading and Investment in Stocks

Shariah Compliant Stocks in Bangladesh? Source: blog.islamicly.com

Shariah Compliant Stocks in Bangladesh?

Trading in shares of listed stocks is permissible subject to the shares and stocks that are in adherence with the Shariah principles. Stocks screened as per Shariah principles are said to be Shariah compliant shares and trading in such shares is allowed in Islam. The key concept of Shariah Compliant Shares is based on the examination of the stock whether they pass the Shariah standards.

What are the Shariah standards?

There are two primary standards to examine stocks and equities to arrive at a list of Shariah compliant stocks.

1- Business activities of listed stocks

Muslims are not allowed to invest in shares of companies that are involved in conventional financial services, Alcohol, Gambling, Pork, pornography, tobacco, Advertising which violates Shariah principles, Media & Entertainment breaching the Shariah principles and trading of gold and silver as cash on the deferred basis.

If the revenue earned from the above mentioned activities exceed 5% of total revenue, trading in shares of such companies is prohibited.

If the revenue from such prohibited activities does not exceed 5% of total revenue, the business sector of the company is believed to be Shariah compliant and further examination is required, which is known as financial screening checks, to deem a company as Shariah compliant.

2- Financial Screening

Companies passing the sector checks need to be further examined for compliance with the Shariah financial ratios.

There are three Shariah accounting / financial ratios to be checked:

I- Debt Compliance Ratio
Debt / Market Value of Equity (36 month average) < 33 %

II- Cash Compliance Ratio
(Cash + Interest Bearing Securities) / Market value of Equity (36 month average) < 33%

III-Accounts Receivables Ratios
Accounts Receivables / Market value of Equity (36 month average) < 49 %

A company that passes the business sector checks as well as financial ratio check is fit for Shariah compliant investment and is known as a Shariah compliant company/ stock.

Please keep in mind that Shariah scholars have made these concessional rules to ascertain which stocks are Shariah compliant for trading and investment purposes only. It does not mean that the interest bearing transactions or earning revenue from prohibited activities is given approval in Islam to any extent.

Since finding 100% pure stocks that are not involved in any interest based transaction nor earn any revenue from prohibited activities is almost impossible due to the current economic systems across the world - where interest bearing activities and prohibited items cannot be avoided.

Now you might be thinking that if the avoidance of interest and haram business activities is not possible, why the investment has been allowed.

Your concern is valid as HARAM activities are HARAM.

This is the reason, Investment in shares and equities was considered not permissible in accordance with the Shariah Principles and the majority of Muslim communities kept themselves away from the capital market.

Trading in stocks was considered permissible only when the International Islamic Fiqh Academy of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (IIFA-OIC) passed a resolution in 1992 allowing investments in only those companies whose business activities were fully Shariah compliant. Trading in companies which were earning a small amount of income coming from non-permissible source was not permitted.

This step was welcomed but it was not sufficient to address the investing issues as most of the companies were found to be involved in some non-permissible activity. For example, Software companies. Their main business activities are Shariah compliant but they earn some interest income from the cash deposited with conventional banks. The other example is hyper markets that mainly sells HALAL products but also sell alcohol and pork related products.

Keeping these things in mind, a comprehensive step to present a practical solution for Shariah sensitive investors was needed.

Many Shariah Scholars felt this challenging situation and came up with a proposal to have a criteria to restrict non-permissible activities.

AAOIFI - Accounting and Auditing organization for Islamic financial institutions which was established in 1990 also allowed for the investments in mixed companies with certain conditions.

Thus, the Shariah screening criteria came into existence. AAOIFI developed a Shariah investing criteria which was adopted by other organizations as well. Active Financial institutions in this space having their own Shariah scholars’ board further developed the Shariah equity screening criteria.

The most acceptable and widely followed Shariah screening criteria is the one that the Shariah Board of S&P has developed.

Islamicly App’s Shariah Advisory Board has also developed a similar Shariah Screening criteria for Islamicly App to provide a list of Shariah screened stocks. For detailed Shariah screening criteria please read here: Islamicly Shariah Screening Criteria

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List of Shariah compliant stocks in Bangladesh

Our Team at Islamicly has examined the Shariah status of stocks listed on Stock Exchanges in Bangladesh and found the below results:

About 39% of all stocks listed in Bangladesh are Shariah Compliant. The above pie shows the % of Shariah compliant stocks in Bangladesh. This gives enough scope to the Islamic investors in Bangladesh to trade in Shariah Screened Stocks.


If you need to know the Shariah Compliant Stocks in India 2020, please check:
List of Shariah compliant Stocks in India

You can also check:
List of Pakistani Shariah Compliant Stocks and Firms Listed on the Pakistan Stock Exchange

Top 5 stocks in Bangladesh by Market Capitalization

Our team has also conducted research on the top 5 stocks by market capitalization in Bangladesh and 4 of them (80%) were found to be Shariah Compliant as shown below. This is a very positive indication for Islamic investors in Bangladesh.

Ticker Name Sector Shariah Compliance
GRAM BD GRAMEENPHONE LTD Communications Services Compliant
RENATA BD RENATA LTD Major Drugs Compliant

Let us give the Shariah compliance status of the top 5 Stocks in Bangladesh


Grameenphone known as GP, is the prime telecommunication service provider in Bangladesh. It has captured 46% market share by providing services to 74 million users.

GP is in a joint venture with Telenor and Grameen Telecom Corporation. Telenor based in Norway owns 55.8% share of Grameenphone and Grameen Telecom Corporation owns 34.2% and the balance 10% is held by the public.

The revenue generated by the company is from the below sources:

1- Revenue from Mobile Communication
2- Revenue from Customer Equipment
3- Other Revenue (commission and other income)
4- Lease Revenue 5- Other Income

Other revenue includes interest income amounting to 0.6 million which is not Islamic and other revenues are considered Shariah compliant.

As more than 99% revenue derived by Grameenphone is from permissible activities, its business sector is classified as Shariah compliant.

The stock has been further examined for financial ratio compliance and all the financial / accounting ratios were found to be within the threshold limits of Shariah equity screening.

The stock is classified as Shariah compliant and its Dividend Purification (DP) Ratio is 0.42%. Whatever income you earn from investing in this stock in the form of dividend, needs to be purified as per the DP Ratio (0.42% of total dividend received). No Purification is required if the income is from capital gain.


BRITISH AMERICAN TOBACCO listed on Dhaka Stock Exchange as well as Chittagong Stock Exchange is one of the leading companies in Bangladesh. The company is involved in producing tobacco products and cigarettes.

Manufacturing and selling of tobacco and its related products are prohibited in Islam.

The major revenue for this company is from sales of tobacco based products. Hence BAT Bangladesh is Shariah not compliant.


This company has a big name in the pharma industry of Bangladesh. This is a Shariah compliant company as it earns major revenue from pharma products only and hence complies with Shariah principles.

The company also passes the financial screening ratios. The company does earn interest income (non-operating) and the same has been considered for calculating the Dividend Purification Ratio that is 3.5% of total income.

Hence, 3.5% of total earnings received in the form of dividends needs to be purified and given to charity.


This is a power generation company that fulfills the majority of power requirement of Bangladesh. The major revenue of the company is from power and energy generation. The company has zero operating non-permissible revenues. The non-operating non-permissible revenue is only from interest income and that needs to be purified.

The company passes the sector checks as well as the financial ratio checks. Thus, UNITED POWER GENERATION & DSTRBTN CO LTD has been classified as Shariah Compliant. Do remember, Shariah compliance status of equity stocks is a dynamic activity.

Please read this blog for more information: Shariah compliant status of stocks is Dynamic or static?

Download the Islamicly app for tracking any change in Shariah compliance status of stocks in Bangladesh.


This stock is also into pharma products serving Bangladesh and overseas markets at large.

The revenue derived by the company is from the following sources:

1- Pharmaceutical products
2- Animal health products
3- Contract manufacturing

The operating revenue earned from the above sources was 98.78%
The non-operating interest income was 1.13%.

The revenue generation from trading in the stock attracts the purification on the rate of 1.13% of the entire earning made during the trading in the form dividends. Based on the analysis, the stock is marked as sector compliant. It also passes the financial ratio screening.

Thus, RENATA Ltd is marked as Shariah compliant.

Sector wise Shariah Screened Equities in Bangladesh

We have examined the Shariah status of listed stocks in Bangladesh based on the sectors they are involved in. The below is the results.

Sector % of Compliant stocks % of Non-Compliant stocks
Auto 50% 50%
Basic Materials 52% 48%
Capital Goods 35% 65%
Consumer Cyclical 40% 60%
Consumer/Non-Cyclical 50% 50%
Energy 17% 83%
Financial 14% 86%
Food & Beverages 53% 47%
Healthcare 77% 23%
Insurance 6% 94%
Mining 50% 50%
Real Estate & Construction 54% 46%
Real Estate & Construction 100% 0%
Services 64% 36%
Technology 100% 0%
Transportation 33% 67%
Utilities 45% 55%

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5 Years Shariah Compliance History of listed Stocks in Bangladesh

This is worth mentioning that we have studied the history of stocks and compared the Shariah compliance over the past 5 years. Let us have a look at the below chart:

The above graph shows that the changes in the number of Shariah compliant in Bangladesh over the past 5 years are minimal. It indicates that the Shariah compliant stocks in Bangladesh are stable and they have minimal Shariah compliance risk.

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Capital Market in Bangladesh

Bangladesh has two major stock exchanges:

Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) and Chittagong Stock Exchange (CSE). Both are regulated by Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission (BSEC)

i. Dhaka Stock Exchange

The main exchange in Bangladesh is the Dhaka Stock Exchange which was established in 1954. The exchange lists equities, bonds, mutual funds, Indices and other financial derivatives.

The indices that are available on Dhaka Stock Exchange are listed below:

1- DSEX & DS30 developed by S&P Dow Jones Indices 2- DSEX Shariah Index : DSEX Shariah Index Methodology by S&P Dow Jones Indices 3- DSEX Index

It is worth mentioning that DSEX Shariah Index plays a key role in fulfilling the Shariah needs of Bangladeshi Shariah sensitive investors. This Shariah index which has been developed by S&P Dow Jones to provide a Shariah compliant stocks benchmark. The index is the subset of DSE Broad Index and includes all Sharia compliant stocks and excludes non-Shariah compliant stocks from the DSE Broad Index.

S&P Dow Jones provides index management services to Dhaka Stock exchange for conventional index as well as its Shariah index. The list of Shariah screened stocks provided by S&P Dow Jones to Dhaka Stock Exchange is screened by its Shariah compliance partner “Ratings Intelligence” that has more than 20 years of experience in screening stocks in accordance with Shariah principles.

To know more about the DSE Shariah index company list in Bangladesh, you can check here: DSEX Shariah Index Methodology by S&P Dow Jones Indices

ii. Chittagong Stock Exchange

CSE came into existence in 1995 where a number of Bangladeshi stocks are listed and trading in shares is conducted through computerized systems. The CSE also provides a Shariah index known as CSE Shariah index that is based on Shariah principles.

About Bangladesh

Bangladesh is a beautiful country housing 162 million people. Bangladesh was part of undivided India and became East Pakistan during the partition of India in 1947. It later separated from Pakistan and became Bangladesh in 1971 Alhamdulillah, the country has 146 million Muslims which is about 90% of the total population of Bangladesh.

Bangladesh shares its borders with India which is the 5th longest land border in the world touching Assam, Tripura, Mizoram, Meghalaya and West Bengal. Melting Himalayan snow and the rivers flowing through the country gives Bangladesh a unique geographic makeup Bangladesh is a secular country that accommodates Islam, Hinduism and Buddhism. Bangladesh is known in the world because of the longest sea beach - Cox's Bazar and world's biggest mangrove forest in the Sundarbans.

The most beautiful tourism places in Bangladesh are Ratargul swamp forest, Saint Martin island, Kaptai lake and Nligiri hill.

About Islamicly

Islamicly App is a one stop solution for all your needs of Shariah Compliant Stocks Investments. Islamicly App provides the Shariah compliance information of stocks listed on Bangladesh stock exchange and Chittagong stock exchange as well as globally listed. The data provided by Islamicly App is the result of well researched, accurate information and 20 years of experience in the same domain.

It has a web/desktop version as well that has advanced features, detailed information and much more. In brief, Islamicly will help you in finding Shariah compliant stocks, creating portfolios, knowing stock prices in your local currencies etc. It will also enable you to calculate the purging amount to donate so as to clean your earnings and make them Halal. Islamicly will also alert you once a compliant company turns not compliant. Through this App, you will be a step ahead with the latest information about the Sharia compliant industry with the help of blogs published on a regular basis.

Team Islamicly also conducts AMAs and Webinars for FREE to educate Halal investors about the details of Shariah compliant investing. You are free to ask any questions for any stock or general Shariah investing rules through the forums and our research team will answer your questions. Isn’t amazing this app amazing? Just download on your smart phone NOW and start investing ISLAMICLY!

Islamicly also has a that allows you to manage your Shariah compliant investments on the web and has many more advance features. So, what you are waiting for? Download the app or access the web portal.

Here is the link to download Islamicly App

Do watch what one of the pioneering scholar of Islamic finance says about Islamicly here:

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