x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

Lacklustre start for Gulf markets

Markets Update: Markets cool for a third straight day in early trading after Japan delivers a downbeat assessment of its economy.

Gulf markets were little changed in early trading as stocks worldwide cooled and traders went in search of signals to buy or sell.

The Dubai Financial Market (DFM) General Index fell 0.2 per cent to 1,554.28, while the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange (ADX) General Index was flat at 2,589.11.

Local markets edged back for the third consecutive day, with sentiment impaired by a lacklustre forecast by Japan's government for the world's third-largest economy, which also lowered its assessment of global growth.

Asian markets were mixed in early trading on the back of the report, with the Nikkei 225 falling 0.5 per cent to 9,033.29 and the Hang Seng Index up 0.1 per cent at 19,820.28.

Oil prices cooled, as Brent crude futures fell 34 cents to $114.38 per barrel.

In the capital, Aldar Properties and RAK Properties led declines.

Most stocks were unchanged on the ADX as trading activity struggled to get going and traded volumes remained miniscule.

Dubai's market was more active, with companies including du, Dubai Investments and Deyaar Development weighing on the emirate's index.

Other Gulf markets also languished, with stocks in Qatar and Oman flat in early trading.

The Kuwait Stock Exchange registered the biggest regional increase, rising 0.5 per cent to 5,819.34.