x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 22 January 2018

Dubai bourse catches cold from chill in world markets

Dubai's measure fell to its lowest point in three months as it extended losses driven by uncertainty in the global economy.

Dubai stocks fell 1.2 per cent yesterday. Jaime Puebla / The National
Dubai stocks fell 1.2 per cent yesterday. Jaime Puebla / The National

Dubai's market dipped yesterday to its lowest point in more than three months as investors tracked uncertainty over the global economic recovery.

Global markets have remained on edge ahead of votes in the Greek parliament this week on additional austerity measures to resolve the country's debt crisis.

The Dubai Financial Market General Index fell 1.2 per cent to 1,507.61 points, its lowest since March 21, as fund managers and traders sold bellwether stocks.

UAE markets will be closed tomorrow for the Islamic holiday Israa Wal Meraj.

Even gains in defensive stocks that perform well at times of economic volatility were subject to the sell-off. Air Arabia, the low-cost carrier based in Sharjah, fell 0.9 per cent to 66 fils.

"There's been a bit of a pullback in terms of volumes on Dubai and Abu Dhabi," said David Verghese, a fund manager at Emirates NBD in Dubai. Daily trading value is at about US$30 million, which "has been the case for the last six trading days".

Trading value rose to as much as $50m a day at the beginning of the year when political upheaval in parts of the Middle East and North Africa led to greater volatility in regional markets.

But analysts said the markets were still at the mercy of forces dictating the movement of international equities.

"We're not going to get much on the company level. Greece continues to dominate," said Mr Verghese.

The Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange General Index edged 0.3 per cent higher to 2711.30.