Investors exit Gulf bourses



Dubai’s Emaar Properties dropped to a more than 40-month closing low, weighing on the index for a third trading day, while banks helped Abu Dhabi recoup Thursday’s losses.

Saudi Arabia’s index inched lower a day after posting its biggest one-day gain since April 2007 and Doha eased slightly on tibid dealings.

Markets in Kuwait and Bahrain also closed higher.

“With the absence of good news there is no impetus and volumes are still thin,” said Amro Motasim, chief trader at Qatar’s Ahli Bank. “The Iranian issue is still not resolved and foreign institutions continue to sell.”

The Dubai index fell for a third trading day, slipping 0.16 percent to 4,883.15 points, its lowest close since October 22.

Emaar extended its decline into a fourth session, falling 0.96 percent to Dh9.30 ($ 2.53), its worst close since April 10, 2005, the early days of a stock market rally that took the stock to as high as Dh29.10 in September that year.

Dubai real estate stocks continue to be hit after local media said on Thursday officials at the international real estate arm of Dubai Holding, Sama Dubai, were being investigated for alleged financial wrongdoing.

The Doha benchmark, up 13.55 percent this year to Thursday’s close, edged 0.19 percent lower to 10,858.60 points, its third day of declines.

Industries Qatar, which has shed more than 5 percent in the last two sessions, slipped 1.43 percent. “Foreign ownership has been decreasing (in the stock) over the last few weeks,” Ahli Bank’s Motasim said.

An executive at the firm’s steel unit said yesterday, the company was dropping plans to invest in a Mauritanian iron ore project.

Qatar Islamic Bank closed 1.01 percent lower.

Kuwait’s measure edges marginally higher as investors cash in shares for a rights issue in Zain and the initial public offering of country’s third mobile telephone operator begins. The index climbs 0.22 percent to 14,620.70 points.

National Industries Group gains 3.57 percent.

Zain fell 1.15 percent.

“Investors who want to buy into Zain’s rights issue and do not have cash have two options; either go to the market and sell other stock to raise cash or sell Zain stock and participate in its rights issue,” said a broker at National Bank of Kuwait.


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