Mideast Stocks: Dubai leads most Gulf bourses higher, Abu Dhabi at peak

Dubai's stock market outperformed its Gulf peers

Investors monitor screens displaying stock information at the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange June 25, 2014. Image for illustrative purposes

Investors monitor screens displaying stock information at the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange June 25, 2014. Image for illustrative purposes


Dubai's stock market outperformed its Gulf peers on Thursday, closing out a fifth straight week of gains, while the Abu Dhabi index reached a record high.

Dubai's main share index rose 1.1%, buoyed by a 2.5% rise in Emirates NBD Bank  and a 4.8% jump in budget airliner Air Arabia, after it swung to a profit for the third quarter. 

Blue-chip developer Emaar Properties added 0.4%, after it said all conditions for the merger with its unit Emaar Malls have been met. 

Shares of Emaar Malls gained 0.8%; they will be suspended from trading starting Nov.16.

The all-share deal to make Emaar Malls a wholly-owned subsidiary of Emaar Properties was announced in March.

Union Properties leapt 5.1%, to become the top gainer on the index, recouping some of the previous session's around 10% drop.

On Tuesday, the company said its chairman, Khalifa Hassan al-Hammadi, was dismissed from the board following disclosure that the public prosecution office in the United Arab Emirates ordered his arrest. 

The UAE attorney general announced the investigation in October into allegations of financial violations by the chairman and other officials of Union Properties, state news agency WAM had reported. 

Saudi Arabia's benchmark index rose 0.4%, with SABIC Agri-Nutrients Co climbing 4.9% and Saudi National Bank closing 1.5% higher.

The Saudi stock market is supported by strong local fundamentals while the market recovers from the latest price corrections. However, the Tadawul remains exposed to further falls in oil prices as oil-consuming countries try to talk prices down, said Wael Makarem, senior market strategist at Exness.

Jabal Omar Development Company fell 0.8%, after third-quarter losses widened. 

The developer attributed the result to tax provisions and an increase in expenses after the expiry of pandemic-related waivers on some financial charges.

In Abu Dhabi, the index gained 0.7%, hitting a record high, with telecoms firm Etisalat rising 1.5%.

Abu Dhabi has proposed a regulatory framework to allow the listing of blank-cheque companies, potentially opening the door to a slew of Gulf-focused deals involving special-purpose acquisition companies (SPACs).

The Qatari index added 0.2%, with Commercial Bank rising 0.7%.

Outside the Gulf, Egypt's blue-chip index ended 0.8% higher, with most of the stocks on the index in positive territory.

Investors remain optimistic regarding the market's potential and the main index could recover from its latest price corrections, said Makarem.

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

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