Investors keen on dividends

Abu Dhabi shares edge lower as investors await for news flow on dividend payments.

Aldar Properties fell 4.4 per cent to 86 fils. Andrew Henderson / The National
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Abu Dhabi shares edged lower yesterday amid low liquidity as investors watched for clues on dividend payouts after a volatile 2011 for financial markets.


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Aldar Properties, the capital's largest developer, fell 4.4 per cent to 86 fils. Sorouh Real Estate, the second largest, declined 2.5 per cent to 76 fils. The Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange General Index was down 1 per cent, the most in a week, to 2,360.96.

The index lost more than 11 per cent last year after unrest in parts of the Middle East and North Africa as well as Europe's debt crisis weakened investor sentiment.

"Cash dividend is in demand now," said Mohammed Ali Yasin, the chief investment officer at CAPM Investment in Dubai. "This is what everyone is looking at now."

Investors will be restructuring their portfolios at this time, moving away from speculative stocks to companies that have traditionally offered high yields, Mr Yasin said.

Shuaa Capital, the country's largest investment bank, fell 0.4 per cent to 47 fils. Union Properties, a Dubai developer, dropped 2.8 per cent to 24 fils. Dubai Financial Market Company, the vehicle through which Dubai's main bourse sells its own shares to the public, declined 2.2 per cent to 80 fils. The Dubai Financial Market General Index was little changed at 1,335.47.

Elsewhere: Kuwait's index lost 0.5 per cent to close at 5,694.10; Bahrain's was down 0.2 per cent to 1,134.91; Oman's slipped 0.1 per cent to 5,733.23; Qatar's retreated 0.2 per cent to 8,809.75; and the Saudi Tadawul All-Share Index fell 0.3 per cent to 6,442.60.

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