x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 20 January 2018

Early trading sees markets continue slide

Markets Update: Bourses begin the trading day falling amid a rout on global equity markets, as the EU and IMF deal to bail out Greece comes under pressure and oil prices plummet.

Local markets slid further in early trading as headwinds blowing from Europe and Asia convinced many investors to hold back from Gulf equities.

The Dubai Financial Market General Index slumped 0.5 per cent to 1,547.70, while the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange General Index was flat at 2,486.27.

World markets have been hammered following Sunday's elections in France and Greece, with the latest market worry being that Greece could seek to renegotiate the terms of its bailout from the European Union and the IMF.

Amid the uncertainty, Dubai's market fell to a 12-week low yesterday as traded volumes on both exchanges dwindled.

Shares in Dubai Financial Market Company, the firm that operates Dubai's stock exchange, slumped 3.6 per cent to Dh1.05 each as volumes dwindled.

One bright spot was Arabtec, which reported a tripling of profits after a boom in new contracts.

The Dubai-listed contracting firm generated quarterly net profits of Dh84m, compared with Dh26.6m during the same period a year earlier.

However, the shares were unchanged at Dh3.33 each.

Asian markets fell on concerns that the eurozone sovereign debt crisis could worsen as Greece struggles to form a government, with the Nikkei 225 falling 1.4 per cent to 9,045.06 and the Hang Seng Index down 0.8 per cent at 20,302.82.

Oil prices sunk further, with Brent crude futures sliding $1.02 to $112.04 per barrel and Nymex crude closing 31 cents lower at $96.70 yesterday.


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