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Trading week ends with gains

A strengthening of European equities and oil prices staying above US$80 a barrel helped most regional markets end the week on a positive note.

A strengthening of European equities and oil prices staying above US$80 a barrel helped most regional markets end the week on a positive note yesterday. The Dubai Financial Market General Index rose 0.3 per cent, helped by gains in the courier company Aramex and the shares of the bourse itself, traded under the stock symbol DFMC. Aramex closed up 1.7 per cent to Dh1.75 and DFMC advanced 1.3 per cent to close at Dh1.48.

The country's largest Islamic lender, Dubai Islamic Bank, moved up 1.5 per cent to Dh1.98. "Mostly the regional markets get a little push when the [global] equities gain and commodities surge," said Nour al Zoubi, the general manager at the Dubai brokerage house MAC Sharaf Securities. "But consistent lower volumes actually suggest that there aren't many buyers and sellers at this level and people are holding on, waiting for the markets to take a positive turn," he said.

The Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange General Index was an exception in the region, closing 0.2 per cent lower at 2,529.40 under the influence of property and financial services stocks. Aldar Properties, the largest-cap developer listed in the capital, dropped 3.7 per cent to Dh2.30 while Sorouh Real Estate retreated 1.1 per cent to Dh1.70. National Bank of Abu Dhabi lost 1.3 per cent to close at Dh11.15 and First Gulf Bank closed 0.3 per cent lower at Dh13.95.

Qatar shares continued a recent winning streak, ending 0.6 per cent higher while Kuwait shares added 0.2 per cent. Muscat and Bahrain each advanced by 0.1 per cent. The Saudi market was closed for the weekend. skhan@thenational.ae

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