Regional stock markets were mixed yesterday as Arabtec Construction continued to surge and traders contemplated a nationwide bourse. Essa Kazim, the chairman and chief executive of the Dubai Financial Market (DFM), said there had been talks on consolidating the three UAE bourses into a single exchange. The DFM General Index rose 0.9 per cent to 1,850.33. About 836 million shares traded on the DFM, and almost a fifth of them were Arabtec's. The construction company's shares jumped again, ending with a gain of 6.6 per cent to Dh2.72 yesterday, after it was awarded a contract valued at Dh524 million to build the Doha World Trade Center. Arabtec is also seen as getting a boost from the proposed Dubai World settlement.
Shares of Tabreed fell 4 per cent, to Dh0.48, after the utility announced it would hold an extraordinary general meeting to discuss restructuring its sukuk, issuing new bonds and cancelling some of its equity. "You had different positive and negative news throughout the day, so the market was reluctant," said Eyad Abdulnabi, the chief financial officer of Al Ramz Securities, which is based in Abu Dhabi.
The Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange General Index declined 0.2 per cent to 2,925.42. In the day's trading, Dana Gas shares closed 1.1 per cent lower at Dh0.89, while Aldar Properties fell 0.8 per cent to Dh4.65. Elsewhere in the region, the Kuwait Stock Exchange rose 0.2 per cent, while the Muscat benchmark fell 1.2 per cent. Both Qatar and Bahrain's main measures gained, adding 0.3 per cent and 1.8 per cent respectively. The Saudi Tadawul All-Shares index closed 0.55 per cent higher.