Mideast Stocks: Dubai leads major Gulf markets higher

24 of thirty stocks rise in Egypt's blue-chip index

  
A woman is seen at Dubai Financial Market in Dubai, United Arab Emirates September 16, 2019.

A woman is seen at Dubai Financial Market in Dubai, United Arab Emirates September 16, 2019.

REUTERS/Christopher Pike

Major stock markets in the Middle East rose on Tuesday, with the Dubai index outperforming the region following an upbeat assessment of its property market by Morgan Stanley.

In Dubai, the main share index closed 1.2% higher, with its top lender Emirates NBD rising 1.2%, while real estate firm Emaar Development jumped more than 8%.

Dubai property prices are rising for the first time in six years, Morgan Stanley said in a research note, amid higher demand and a slowdown of project launches since 2017. 

The banker also upgraded Emaar Development to 'overweight', raising its price target 37% to 3.7 dirhams.

Air Arabia climbed 4.6%, a day after the budget airliner announced the launch of new flights to Sharm El Sheikh from Sharjah starting June 29. 

Dubai on Monday eased COVID-19 restrictions, allowing hotels in the regional tourism hub to operate at full capacity and permitting concerts and sports events where all attendees and participants have been vaccinated. 

In Abu Dhabi, the index gained 0.8%, led by a 1.4% rise in the country's largest lender First Abu Dhabi Bank and a 1.2% rise in telecoms firm Etisalat .

Elsewhere, Abu Dhabi Ship Building surged about 15% after the United Arab Emirates signed a 3.5 billion dirham ($952.95 million) contract with the firm to manufacture new patrol vessels for the Gulf Arab state's navy. 

Saudi Arabia's benchmark index added 0.3%, extending gains for third consecutive session, with Al Rajhi Bank rising 1.4%.

The Qatari benchmark edged up 0.1%, bolstered by a 0.7% gain in Qatar Islamic Bank.

Outside the Gulf, Egypt's blue-chip index rose 1%, with most of its stocks in positive territory, including El Sewedy Electric, which closed 7.8% higher.

On Monday, the firm reported a net profit of 700.1 million Egyptian pounds ($44.8 million) for the first-quarter, up from 400.1 million a year earlier.

($1 = 3.6728 UAE dirham)

($1 = 15.6300 Egyptian pounds)

(Reporting by Ateeq Shariff in Bengaluru; Editing by Kirsten Donovan) ((AteeqUr.Shariff@thomsonreuters.com; +918061822788;))


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