Region's markets unshaken

Local shares mostly hold their ground

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Declines in Asian and European markets spilled over into the Gulf yesterday but local shares mostly held their ground. In the face of more global volatility, regional bourses performed "relatively well compared to what we thought would happen", said Ali Khan, the managing director of Arqaam Capital. "We see buying activity but volumes are low." The Dubai Financial Market General Index moved up 1.2 per cent to 1,549.8, while the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange General Index dropped 0.1 per cent to 2,549.

Emaar Properties, the UAE's largest developer, advanced 1.9 per cent to Dh3.21. Commercial Bank of Dubai remained unchanged at Dh3.05 after Moody's Investors Service downgraded the bank's local and foreign currency deposits ratings by one notch. In Abu Dhabi, Dana Gas shares changed hands the most and ended the day down 2.9 per cent at 67 fils. The Abu Dhabi leasing company Waha Capital rose 1.6 per cent to 60 fils, while Abu Dhabi National Hotels dropped 6.2 per cent to Dh3.

Analysts said investors were still processing the effects of Dubai Holding Commercial Operations Group taking a Dh23.56 billion loss on Tuesday. "UAE markets will continue to digest restructurings, whether it's Dubai Holding, Amlak, Tamweel or Dubai World," Mr Khan said. "We have to work our way through those before we can price in what's left to be priced in." Elsewhere in the region, Kuwait's index rose 0.08 per cent to 6,709.20; Qatar's index fell 1.3 per cent to 6,737.40; Muscat's main measure lost 0.4 per cent to 6,182.80; and Bahrain's bourse dropped 0.4 per cent to 1,415.65. The Saudi Tadawul All-Share Index gained 0.5 per cent to 6,001.38.