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MENAFN - The Peninsula - 13/02/2014

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(MENAFN - The Peninsula) Qatar Exchange continued its upswing trend yesterday by adding 91.35 points (0.80 percent) to advance to 11,452.97 points from its previous closing of 11,361.62 points.

The volume of the shares traded fell to 17,710,211 from 19,697,807 on the last day and the value of shares increased to QR792,313,124.11 from QR774,811,214.06.

Among the top gainers were Qatar National Bank, which was up 1.57 percent to QR188, Commercial Bank of Qatar gained 2.29 percent to QR71.60, Qatar Islamic Bank added 1.02 percent to QR79.40 and Masraf al Rayan up by 2.70 percent to QR39.95.

The banking and financial sector index added 1.48 percent, while consumer goods and services sector index up 4.60 percent. The industrial sector lost 0.13 percent while insurance sector gained 0.40 percent.

Meanwhile, the regional markets registered a mixed response yesterday. Egypt's bourse rose as the country's biggest listed bank posted strong fourth-quarter earnings, while markets in the United Arab Emirates weakened after a disappointing earnings report from Abu Dhabi property developer Aldar.

Egypt's index added one percent to 7,571 points after Commercial International Bank (CIB) posted a 29 percent rise in quarterly net profit to 757m Egyptian pounds (109m). The bank's stock rose 1.9 percent.

The index is "heading towards 7,600 points after CIB reported strong Q4 earnings numbers," said Islam Batrawy, Cairo-based head of MENA equity sales at NBK Capital. "CIB was the major contributor to the upward move."

In the UAE, however, both bourses closed lower after Aldar Properties disappointed some investors despite reporting higher net profit. Its stock fell 4.2 percent while Abu Dhabi's index was down 0.1 percent.

"I think disappointment could be with the dividend," said Sanyalak Manibhandu, senior analyst at NBAD Securities.

"Ahead of the announcement, I think a lot of investors were expecting Aldar to pay at least 10 fils (per share worth Dh1). They paid seven." Last year, Aldar paid a cash dividend of six percent.

Brokerage Arqaam Capital also pointed to delays in handing over some projects which led to lower-than-expected revenues. It described Aldar's recurring income as "uninspiring".

That may have prompted some retail investors to book profits and sell UAE small-cap stocks along with those in the property and related sectors.

Dubai-based builder Arabtec shed 3.3 percent while shares in Emaar Properties edged down 0.4 percent. Dubai's index fell 0.4 percent, ending a seven-session upward streak.

Oman bourse gained 0.2 percent, while Saudi Arabia's index rose 0.6 percent, largely lifted by telecommunications firm Etihad Etisalat (Mobily) , which gained 2.5 percent in thin trading.

Mobily made no major announcements on Wednesday. Last month, it said it would start leasing its mobile phone network to a new operator to launch a rival service in the first quarter of this year. It also beat analysts' forecast with a 8.6 percent increase in fourth-quarter profit.

 






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