x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

Optimism rules the day on UAE bourses

Market Wrap: UAE equities closed higher, with the Dubai Financial Market General Index, gaining the most in a month after stellar first quarter reports from the country's lenders Emirates NBD and ADCB with video.

Local equities closed higher, with Dubai's main index gaining the most in a month, supported by optimism on bank earnings after Emirates NBD reported on Sunday a 27 per cent increase in profits for the first quarter and Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank said its profits for the quarter more than doubled.

Emirates NBD, Dubai's biggest lender, led the Dubai Financial Market General Index 1.9 per cent higher to 1666.06. Shares of Emirates NBD, surged 10.9 per cent to Dh4.27 after the lender reported Dh1.41 billion in profits for the first quarter.

Other lenders listed in Dubai also made decent gains. Dubai Islamic Bank gained 2.7 per cent to Dh2.28. Commercial bank of Dubai added 1.6 per cent to Dh3.05

In the capital, Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank jumped 5.5 per cent to Dh2.89, after the lender reported on Sunday an 158 per cent increase in profits to Dh583 million.

The numbers were better than expected, said Haissam Arabi, the chief executive of Gulfmena Alternative Investments in Dubai. "It's a great sign of a potential comeback in the banking cycle," Mr Arabi said. The Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange General Index moved 0.5 per cent to 2704.24 points.

Supporting the optimism, the country's central bank said M1 money supply increased 9.5 per cent for the month of march, compared with one year ago.

Elsewhere in the region, Kuwait's measure was unchanged at 6493.10. Bahrain's index lost 0.2 per cent to 1400.27. Oman's measure added 0.1 per cent to 6336.91. Qatar's bourse slipped 0.2 per cent to 8441.91. The Saudi Tadawul All-Share Index was unchanged at 6686.30.