Investor sentiment was bullish yesterday, helping Dubai's main stock market to rebound, extending a rally that began at the start of the year.
Emaar Properties, the region's biggest developer, rose 4.1 per cent to Dh2.99 a share. Dubai Investments jumped 5.7 per cent to 92 fils after the company's chief executive Khalid bin Kalban told Bloomberg News it "plans to exit some of its businesses as the emirate's economy shows signs of a recovery".
The Dubai Financial Market General Index rose 4.7 per cent to 1,686.66, bringing its yearly gain to 24.6 per cent.
Dubai's main index lost about 8 per cent last week amid profit-taking, with most stocks falling an average of about 9 per cent.
"Sentiment has been improving, with many investors waiting for a correction," said Fadi Al Said, a senior fund manager at ING Investment Management in Dubai. "You normally see this in a bull market, the moves have been recently aggressive." The Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange General Index gained 0.9 per cent to 2,586.69, led by property stocks.
After the trading session, both companies announced in a joint statement an intention to merge pending a study expected to be completed in three months.
"I was quite surprised, to be honest, with the stock price movement I thought to myself something was going on," said Saleem Khokhar, the head of equities at National Bank of Abu Dhabi.
Elsewhere in the region, Kuwait's measure rose 0.3 per cent to 6,154.40, Bahrain's index lost 0.9 per cent to 1,150.06 , Oman's MSM 30 Index added 0.4 per cent to 5,885.43 and Qatar's QE Index added 0.5 per cent to 8,636.53. The Saudi Tadawul All-Share Index rose 0.7 per cent to 7,533.74.