x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 24 January 2018

Iran tensions and oil price rises spark surge in Dubai shares

Markets Update: UAE stock-markets start the trading week on a positive note as oil trades above $100.

Dubai shares surged on Sunday as oil traded above $100 a barrel amid US tensions with Iran.

Gulf Navigation, a publicly traded tanker owner in the emirate, jumped 5.8 per cent to 27 fils a share. The Dubai Financial Market General Index gained 2 per cent to 1547.54 points.

Oil futures traded in New York for March delivery added 0.9 per cent to 103.24 a barrel on Friday, the highest closing price since May 10. Iran is threatening to blockade the Straight of Hormuz. The EU plans to impose an embargo on Iranian oil this summer.

Dana Gas, traded in Abu Dhabi, surged 6.8 per cent to 47 fils. The UAE gas explorer and producer said its board will consider a revised annual budget for this year at a meeting on Feb 22. The Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange General Index rose 0.5 per cent to 2487.59 points.

"Its very encouraging," said Sebastien Henin, a portfolio manager at The National Investor in Abu Dhabi. "The backdrop is good with strong oil prices, international markets are well oriented, the recession is almost over in the US."

Elsewhere in the region, Kuwait's measure added 1.2 per cent to 6057.30 points. Bahrain's benchmark added 0.3 per cent to 1147.23 points. Oman's MSM 30 Index added 0.3 per cent to 5675.47 points. Qatar's QE Index added 0.5 per cent to 8594.11 points. The Saudi Tadawul was up 0.2 per cent to 6830.31 points.