Gulf mostly muted as Emaar Properties weighs on Dubai

In Dubai, the main share index dropped 1.3 per cent, extending losses for a fourth straight session



Developer Emaar Properties dived two per cent, following a weak outlook on Dubai housing market on the back of an increase in borrowing costs. — File photo
Developer Emaar Properties dived two per cent, following a weak outlook on Dubai housing market on the back of an increase in borrowing costs. — File photo

By Reuters

Published: Mon 5 Sep 2022, 7:49 PM

Middle East stock markets ended in red on Monday trade with Dubai leading the losses, dragged down by Emaar properties, while Egyptian market extended the gains led by telecoms stocks.

Saudi Arabia’s non-oil private sector expanded in August at its fastest rate since October, as business activity was boosted by improving demand conditions, a survey showed.

A similar survey in UAE showed non-oil private sector grew in August at its fastest pace since June, 2019, boosted by better demand and lower selling prices, though sentiment about the future slipped to a 17-month low.

In Dubai, the main share index dropped 1.3 per cent, extending losses for a fourth straight session. Developer Emaar Properties dived two per cent, following a weak outlook on Dubai housing market on the back of an increase in borrowing costs.

Analysts suggested that property prices in Dubai will rise this year and next at a slower pace than previously thought as higher mortgage rates and the cost of living crisis will reduce foreign demand.

Most analysts said the recovery was fragile and uneven, and an oversupply of residential properties along with rising interest rates would pressure prices over the coming months.

Meanwhile, Dubai road-toll operator Salik said on Monday it is selling 20 per cent of the company via an initial public offering, the third state-linked entity to seek a listing this year.

The market could see a reversal in sentiment with the announcement of Salik’s IPO as it could attract investors looking for new opportunities said Wael Makarem, senior market strategist — Mena at Exness.

Saudi Arabia’s benchmark index fell 0.7 per cent, with Saudi National Bank decreasing 1.9 per cent and Al Rajhi Bank easing 0.8 per cent.

Abu Dhabi’s index lost 0.7per cent, pressured by a 1.2 per cent decrease in the country’s largest lender First Abu Dhabi Bank.

However, Alpha Dhabi Holding was slightly up after its unit Pure Health signed an agreement to acquire a minority equity investment in Ardent Health Services, a leading US healthcare provider, for a total investment of Dh1.8 billion.

In Qatar, the benchmark also declined 0.8 per cent, extending losses to a sixth consecutive session, as financial stocks were falling most in the index, with the Gulf’s largest lender Qatar National Bank shedding two per cent while Qatar Islamic Bank was up 1.5 per cent.

Outside the Gulf, Egypt’s blue-chip index was up 1.7 per cent, as Telecom Egypt soared 15.8 per cent.

Telecom Egypt clarified media reports on Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund’s intention to buy the company’s stake in Vodafone Egypt. The telco said it has not received an official offer from any organisation.

The Egyptian stock market could record additional increases thanks to improving conditions in non-energy sectors, Makarem said. — Reuters


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