x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Stable oil price lifts shares

UAE shares gain ground to ensure all GCC markets posted gains today, with stronger oil prices and a good showing from Asian markets.

DUBAI // GCC equity markets posted gains across the board today, with stronger oil prices and a good showing from Asian markets. UAE shares managed to gain some ground after two days of losses surrounding the Dubai World debt restructuring. Meanwhile, the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange General Index, which was the biggest loser in the region on Monday, advanced 0.7 per cent to 2,729.95, aided by gains from telecommunications, property and banking stocks.

Etisalat, the country's largest telecoms operator, and Aldar Properties, the Middle East's second-largest property developer by assets, helped spur the market recovery, advancing 2.2 and 1.3 per cent, respectively. "The good news today was that there was no bad news today," said Ian Munro, the head of equity research at Mac Capital in Dubai. "The positive close of Asian markets earlier and the fact that oil is staying at US$74 (per barrel gave the markets some impetus today."

A sustained rally, he added, would only be possible if the "overhangs" could be removed, such as Dubai's debt restructuring. The Dubai Financial Market General Index was supported by gains in property stocks. Arabtec, the region's largest listed contractor, finished the day 2.8 per cent higher, while Emaar properties moved 1.3 per cent ahead. Shuaa Capital rose 3.5 per cent. Elsewhere in the region, Kuwait led the way, ending trade up 0.8 per cent. It was followed by Muscat, adding 0.7 per cent. Qatar's main measure closed 0.1 per cent up, while Bahrain shares closed flat. Saudi Tadawul All Share Index closed the day with a 0.8 per cent gain. The Dubai Financial Market General Index was supported by gains in property stocks, closing up 0.5 per cent at 1,621.99.

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