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MENAFN - Bahrain Tribune - 22/08/2008

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(MENAFN - Bahrain Tribune) With investors bailing out from positions in large caps, all the markets open for trading in the GCC finished lower yesterday. While Abu Dhabi and Qatar waned around 2% each, Oman wilted 1.74% as investors pocketed gains from its recent rally. Dubai and Bahrain also suffered significant losses. Meanwhile, Saudi was closed for its weekend.

All-around weakness tugged the Bahrain All Share Index 18 points below the unchanged line. The market recorded a volume of 4.72 million as against 3.57 million yesterday. The banking sector that tripped over 1% led the declines. Both Ahli United Bank and National Bank of Bahrain slipped 2%. Bahrain Commercial Facilities topped the losers, dwindling 5%. On the other hand, Albaraka Bank Group, up 2% stayed afloat and Al Salam Bank did a volte-face adding 2% yesterday.

After rallying for seven straight days, the Omani market ended in the red amidst profit-booking. Investors exited stocks across sectors right from the word go, with industry and services skimming around 2% each. Incidentally, both telecom giant Omantel and Bank Muscat also lost 2%. Port Service Corp erased 8% and Galfar tripped 3%. On a brighter note, four stocks managed to escape the onslaught - Al Sharqia Investment Holding which added 1% on thin trades and Shell Oman Marketing (0.09%) managed to put its nose above the water.

Kuwait's reprieve proved to be a short-lived one with the market closing 83 points low at 14,588 amid low volumes. Save a minor gain in insurance, all the sectors wilted with investment (down 252 points) suffering the brunt. International Finance slipped 2% and Burgan Group Holding tumbled 8%; Hayat Comm deleted 5%. On a positive note, Warba Ins moved up 4% on just two trades and Zain soared 6% taking its price to KWD 1.740.

The DSM 20 Index succumbed over 2%, bogged down by heavy selling pressure in all the sectors. The industrial (-294 points) and banking (-254 points) were the most rejected ones. Qat Nat Cem eroded 3% and Mannai Corp plunged 10% close to its lower limit. Qat Islamic Bk dropped 2%.
Nonetheless, Gulf Holding and Al-Ahli Bank added between 2% and 0.50%. The market breadth was largely negative with 37 decliners as against 3

Dubai ended yesterday's session on a sullied note, with a loss of nearly over 1%, catalysed by relentless selling in index heavyweights - Emaar and Dubai Islamic Bank dipped 2% and 1%, in that order. None of the traded sectors managed to vault the fence - RE and utilities were the worst affected. Union Properties collapsed 4%, Islamic Arab Insurance deleted 4% and DFM Co. trimmed 2%. However, Gulf General Invt, up 4% topped the winners' list of mere three risers.

Abu Dhabi
Infected by regional downtrend, the Abu Dhabi market moved further south. A majority of the sectors ended as losers with both RE and energy paring around 4% each. Dana Gas and Aldar Properties crumbled 5% and 4%, respectively. AD Aviation crashed 8%. Elsewhere, the Consumer and Health Care sectors found their place in the green, as Gulf Medical Projects and AD Nat Hotels added between 4% and 3%, respectively.
Contributed by TAIB


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