x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Investors await vital spark

Stock markets in Abu Dhabi and Dubai edged lower on the first trading day of the year as investors awaited a catalyst to improve liquidity.

First Gulf Bank lost 0.6 per cent to Dh15.35. Paulo Vecina / The National
First Gulf Bank lost 0.6 per cent to Dh15.35. Paulo Vecina / The National

Stock markets in Abu Dhabi and Dubai edged lower on the first trading day of the year as investors awaited a catalyst to improve liquidity.

In the capital, First Gulf Bank lost 0.6 per cent to Dh15.35. Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank, the country's second-biggest Sharia-compliant bank, declined 0.6 per cent to Dh3.14. The Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange General Index lost 0.2 per cent to 2,396.98 points.

"While the macro picture for the UAE looks healthy for 2012, investors are not seeing any significant Government involvement to revive sentiment," said Tariq Qaqish, the head of asset management at Al Mal Capital, based in Dubai. "Liquidity is a key for the local equity market.

"However, markets require financial regulations to be approved such as investments collective schemes, further listings that diversify the stock exchanges from already represented sectors such as banks and real estate."

Property and mortgage firms led Dubai's benchmark lower yesterday. Emaar Properties, the region's largest developer, lost 2.7 per cent to Dh2.50. Arabtec Holding, the emirate's largest contractor, fell 1.8 per cent to Dh1.56.

Tamweel, an Islamic financing company, lost 0.6 per cent to 60 fils. The Dubai Financial Market General Index lost 0.8 per cent to 1,341.56.

Elsewhere in the region: Kuwait's measure lost 0.3 per cent to 5,791.70; Bahrain's index lost 0.4 per cent to 1,138.51; Oman's MSM 30 Index added 0.2 per cent to 5,710.45; Qatar's QE Index was little changed at 8,786.07. The Saudi Tadawul All-Share Index rose 0.2 per cent to 6,398.72.

halsayegh@thenational.ae

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