UAE, Asian equity markets drop amid Covid-19 concerns

UAE, Asian equity

Dubai - Out of 18 traded stocks, 15 were trading in the negative territory on the UAE bourse.

By Waheed Abbas

Published: Mon 30 Mar 2020, 12:22 PM

Last updated: Mon 30 Mar 2020, 9:30 PM

The UAE equity markets plunged on Monday due to drop in oil prices and Asian markets, hit by growing coronavirus cases in the world.
Dubai Financial Market slid nearly 1.8 per cent with 24 out of 26 stocks trading in the red by mid-day trading. Abu Dhabi had lost 2.9 per cent by 12noon UAE time. Out of 18 traded stocks, 15 were trading in the negative territory on the UAE bourse.
The UAE markets started the week on a positive note with indices ending higher on Sunday.

Saudi Arabia's Tadwul Index, Bahrain Bourse and Boursa Kuwait were nearly unchanged in the morning trade on Monday.

Earlier on Monday, President Donald Trump said modeling estimates suggest that the US death rate from the new coronavirus is likely to hit its peak in two weeks. That spooked investors, sending oil prices to 17-year low and pushing Asian markets lower.

US benchmark West Texas Intermediate fell below $20 a barrel but recovered some of the losses later in the day.

Most Asian markets were down but trimmed earlier losses. Japan's Nikkei dropped 1.57%, Shanghai blue chips were down 0.94%, and there were sharper drops in Southeast Asia, with Singapore' benchmark index down 2.95%.

Simon Ballard, chief economist  at First Abu Dhabi Bank, said global market sentiment opened the week in Asia on the back foot once again this morning as the Covid-19 pandemic continues to decimate the macro outlook. That said Asian bourses have pared some of their losses and US and European equity futures are now trading in positive territory indicating perhaps a slightly better bias. But the overarching tone is undoubtedly fragile.

Australia's benchmark saw a late surge, closing up 7% after Prime Minister Scott Morrison unveiled a A$130 billion ($79.86 billion) package to help save jobs.

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