Investor confidence up in the GCC

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Shuaa Capital's second monthly investor confidence survey came out today, and the results, while not great, are better than they were last month. For the GCC, the index climbed from 111.6 to 119.4, an increase of 7 per cent. In the UAE, the index rose 4.3 per cent, from 102.6 to 107.0.

The results come as markets in the region have been rising after sharp falls last year. Stocks in Dubai have recovered recently but are still down by over 70 per cent from their highs last year.

The confidence survey, launched last month, queries a variety of market participants about their current views and longer-term outlooks for local markets and economies. The index can range from 0 to 200 and is designed so that a score above 100 indicates positive sentiment, while a score below 100 indicates negative sentiment.

Despite this month's better numbers, Oliver Schutzmann, the head of investor relations at Shuaa, said investor sentiment for the UAE was still "weak".

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"Whilst the current investor sentiment is weak for the UAE with just 11.3% of investors reporting positively about the overall economy, the outlook is very different. 43.7% of investors expect the UAE economy to improve over the next six months, with just 16.9% anticipating a decline in the overall economic condition," he said.

Investors picked the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange as the most undervalued, with 59.2 per cent predicting a rise in prices. Another 60 per cent saw an improvement in economic conditions across the GCC during the next six months.