x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 23 January 2018

Ajman Bank jumps 6 per cent on investor speculation

Markets Update: Lender issues statement denying that it has plans to enter strategic agreement with a third party.

Shares in Ajman Bank today jumped by 6 per cent, following rosy third-quarter results posted last week and speculation that an unnamed investor is buying up shares in the bank.

Ajman Bank’s shares jumped to Dh1.06 at 1pm on the Dubai Financial Market, after the lender on Wednesday said its net income increased to Dh13.5 million in the period ended September 30, up from Dh3.02 million last year.

Brokers and fund managers told The National that the share-price increase was also due to speculation that a strategic investor is buying up shares in the company.

Ajman Bank today released a regulatory filing to the Dubai bourse, denying that it had made any strategic agreement with a third party.

“The bank has no plans or desire to enter into a strategic agreement with any party, internally or externally," it said. "The bank continues to progress according to its strategic plans, and there is no need for any financial partner, or other, to implement the strategic plan.”

Meanwhile, RAK Properties, an Abu Dhabi-listed developer, rose at the open of trading on Sunday ahead of a board meeting scheduled tomorrow to discuss third-quarter earnings.

Shares in the company jumped 5.2 per cent to 40 fils during early trading.

RAK Properties was part of the UAE's building boom, but was hit hard in 2008 after the financial crisis dried up mortgage lending.

The company has been unable to diversify or expand into neighbouring markets that have benefited from infrastructure spending, such as Saudi Arabia or Qatar.

The Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange General Index slipped 0.3 per cent to 2666.41 points, while the Dubai Financial Market General Index slipped 0.1 per cent to 1615.64 points.

Elsewhere in the region, Kuwait's measure slipped 0.5 per cent to 5743.46 points. Bahrain's index was unchanged at 1068.82 points. Oman's MSM 30 Index was little changed, up 0.02 per cent, to 5710.36 points. Qatar's QE Index slipped 0.2 per cent to 8555.45 points.

The Saudi Tadawul All-Share Index slipped 0.3 per cent to 6919.06 points yesterday. The Saudi Arabian bourse opens at noon.