Mideast Stocks: Lender FAB hurts Abu Dhabi, Qatar nears five-month low

Abu Dhabi registers biggest one-day fall in eight months

Investors speak as they monitor stocks at the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange. Image for illustrative purposes

Investors speak as they monitor stocks at the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange. Image for illustrative purposes


Abu Dhabi's stock index fell sharply for its worst day in eight months on Wednesday while Qatar touched its lowest in nearly five months, pressured respectively by First Abu Dhabi Bank (FAB) and Industries Qatar  going ex-dividend.

The Abu Dhabi index fell 2.2 percent, its biggest intraday loss since June 2018, with largest lender First Abu Dhabi Bank dropping 5.2 percent after going ex-dividend. The bank had declared a cash dividend of 0.74 dirhams last month.

Union National Bank, meanwhile, gained 1.1 percent after calling for a shareholder meeting to approve the proposed merger between with Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank , which firmed by 0.2 percent.

The Qatar index lost 1.3 percent to its lowest since October 2018, with 14 of its 20 stocks declining.

Market heavyweight Industries Qatar slumped 5.7 percent to its lowest in six months after the stock went ex-dividend.

The index had jumped 21 percent in 2018 to become one of the world's best-performing markets, helped by limits being lifted on foreign ownership of shares, but it has retreated by 4.4 percent this year as the impact of the change has faded.

In Saudi Arabia the market dipped by 0.3 percent, with Samba Financial Group shedding 1.1 percent and Saudi Basic Industries  down 0.5 percent.

Saudi Pharmaceutical Industries and Medical Appliances 2070.SE fell 0.7 percent after its full-year net profit dropped to 100.8 million riyals ($26.9 million) from 148.5 million riyals a year earlier.

The Dubai index eased by 0.4 percent as largest lender Emirates NBD ENBD.DU lost 1.1 percent and DAMAC Properties fell by 2.1 percent.

Dubai property prices have been slipping from their mid-2014 peak and were partly behind the index's worst performance in local currency terms compared with other major markets last year.

Though Dubai stocks have rallied this year, led by strong fourth-quarter results at real estate companies, an expected further fall in property prices is capping gains.

Egypt's blue-chip index fell 0.6 percent, with investment company Egypt Kuwait Holding sliding by 4.3 percent. Last week the company reported fourth-quarter profit more than halved.

The country's biggest lender, Commercial International Bank Egypt , dropped 0.5 percent.


The index slipped 0.3 pct to 8,534 points


The index was down 0.4 pct at 2,626 points


The index fell 1.3 pct to 9,884 points


The index lost 2.2 pct to 4,977 points


The index was down 0.6 pct at 14,643 points


The index rose 0.4 pct to 5,596 points


The index slipped 0.3 pct to 4,153 points


The index  slid 0.3 pct to 1,411 points

($1 = 3.7502 riyals)

(Reporting by Ateeq Shariff in Bengaluru Editing by David Goodman) ((AteeqUr.Shariff@thomsonreuters.com; +918067497129;))

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