Mideast Stocks: Dubai index up on property shares as major Gulf bourses ease

Sovereign fund PIF considers Saudi Telecom stake sale

An investor uses his mobile phone at the Dubai Financial Market.

An investor uses his mobile phone at the Dubai Financial Market.

REUTERS/Mosab Omar

Dubai's stock market ended higher on Wednesday, buoyed by gains in real estate stocks, while other major Gulf markets were little changed.

Dubai's main share index rose 0.4%, with blue-chip developer Emaar Properties rising 1.4%, while logistics firm Aramex advanced 1.5%.

Dubai repaid $500 million in bonds due on Tuesday in what the government said was a sign of fiscal stability despite the coronavirus-driven economic downturn.

Elsewhere, DAMAC Properties finished 1.6% higher.

The founder of DAMAC has postponed efforts to take the firm private after the securities regulator of the United Arab Emirates launched a review of the transaction, the company said on Tuesday. 

Sajwani made a $595 million offer this month to buy out minority shareholders in DAMAC Properties, which he has run for nearly two decades.

Saudi Arabia's benchmark index traded flat, as gains in property shares were offset by declines in telecoms and financial shares.

Saudi Telecom Company7010.SE declined 1.8%.

The kingdom's Public Investment Fund is considering divesting part of its stake in Saudi Telecom, as the sovereign wealth fund seeks to monetise some of its assets. 

In Abu Dhabi, the index eased 0.1%, pressured by a 0.5% fall in telecoms firm Etisalat and a 1% slide in Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank.

The Qatari benchmark fell 0.1%, hit by a 1% fall in Qatar Islamic Bank and a 0.8% decrease in petrochemical maker Industries Qatar.

Outside the Gulf, Egypt's blue-chipe index gained 0.7%, as most of the stocks were in positive territory including Abu Qir Fertilizers, which closed 2.5% higher.

(Reporting by Ateeq Shariff in Bengaluru; Editing by Krishna Chandra Eluri) ((AteeqUr.Shariff@thomsonreuters.com; +918061822788;))

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