Dubai and Qatar ease away from multi-year lows; Abu Dhabi wanes

Emerging market currencies are weakening, and if the U.S. hikes interest rates on Wednesday then the dollar will strengthen. (File photo: AP)

Heavyweight stocks helped Dubai and Qatar’s markets rise for a second session on Tuesday as the bourses pulled away from the multi-year lows of earlier this week, although Abu Dhabi’s index gave back initial gains.

Dubai’s bourse was 0.1 percent higher as of 0728 GMT. It had gained 1.2 percent in early trade before some traders booked quick profits, indicating little confidence in a more sustained rebound from Sunday’s two-year low.

Emaar Properties climbed 0.2 percent and accounted for roughly a third of total market turnover.

Builder Arabtec rose 0.6 percent, trimming its 2015 declines to 65 percent.

Dubai’s apartment and house sales prices on average fell 16 and 14 percent respectively in the first 11 months of 2015, industry consultants CBRE estimates said on Monday, forecasting further declines in sale prices next year.

Stuttered

Dubai’s real estate sector has stuttered this year following a rebound close to the peak values of the previous decade.

Emerging market currencies are weakening, and if the U.S. hikes interest rates on Wednesday then the dollar will strengthen.

“Since Gulf currencies are pegged to the dollar this may hurt the real estate market, further dissuading potential foreign buyers from investing in Dubai,” said Abdulrahman al Muhaidib, chief executive of Jeddah-based real estate investment firm Wathrah.

Abu Dhabi’s index was down 0.3 percent, having been up in early trade. Six of the seven largest stocks fell, including Aldar Properties which dropped 0.9 percent.

Standard & Poor’s has revised its outlook on Aldar to positive.

“We believe Aldar Properties has improved its operational performance and strengthened its liquidity position on the back of steady recurring income from its rental portfolio and strong cash collections from government receivables,” the ratings agency said on Monday.

Qatar’s benchmark rose 0.6 percent to 9,796 points as gainers outnumbered losers 11 to two. The bourse is now about 150 points above Sunday’s two-year low.

Islamic lender Masraf Al Rayan, the session’s most traded stock, climbed 1.8 percent, heading towards a second session of gains.
 

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 12:04 - GMT 09:04
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