Mashreq, Arabtec shares slip as UAE bourses end lower

Markets Wrap: Bourses in Dubai and Abu Dhabi fell out of step with emerging markets yesterday as banking stocks dragged the country's indexes lower.

Investors in Mashreq are having a sinking feeling. Steve Crisp / Reuters
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Bourses in Dubai and Abu Dhabi fell out of step with emerging markets yesterday as investors sold off banking stocks.

Mashreq was the biggest loser on the Dubai Financial Market General Index as it fell 10 per cent to Dh5.40 per share. The overall index dipped 0.11 per cent to 1,874.50.

"On Tuesday the market was down too far so today was a return to normal," said Khaldoun Jaradat, a trading manager at Brokerage House Securities. "Local earnings and dividends have all been driving stocks in recent days but the global market has also been a factor."

Arabtec Holding's stock also slumped 2.9 per cent to Dh2.1 per share. It was the fifth such decline since Thursday, when the builder announced it would undergo a rights issue and sell Dh1.6 billion of convertible bonds.

The Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange General Index closed 0.6 per cent lower to 3,001.95. Commercial Bank International's shares dipped 0.6 per cent to close at Dh1.49.

A total of Dh236.9 million shares were traded on the DFM, compared with a 50-day average of Dh298.7m.

In Abu Dhabi, Dh145m shares were traded, lower than the 50-day average of Dh212.2m shares.

The performance of the country's bourse was at odds with a generally positive trend elsewhere. The MSCI Emerging Markets Index rose 0.7 per cent to 1,056.96 at 5pm in Hong Kong, heading for the highest close since February 20.

Improving global sentiment has spurred record Chinese purchases of foreign currency and growth in US service industries. The gauge has increased 0.2 per cent this year, compared with a 6.5 per cent gain in the MSCI World Index of developed nations.