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MENAFN - Bahrain Tribune - 16/10/2008

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(MENAFN - Bahrain Tribune) Shrugging off past two sessions' gains, most of the GCC markets declined yesterday as oil fell to a 13-month low and fears that the world's biggest economies may slip into a recession dampened investor sentiments. Dubai (-7%) led the downhill drive as most blue-chips slumped; Qatar and Kuwait also knocked off substantial percentages. Meanwhile, Saudi maintained its winning tempo for the fourth day in a row.


As investors exited positions across sectors, Bahrain wiped out yesterday's gains to settle 1% in the red. Hurt by sharp decline in Batelco's (-4%) price, the service (-49 points) sector suffered the most; despite a 56% surge in 9M figures, Gulf Hotel Group fell 3%. Meanwhile, Tameerk and Esterad Investment scaled 4% and 3%, respectively.


After tumbling over 1.4% in early trade, decent buying in the banking sector restricted Oman's losses to a 0.35%. The services sector lost 1% as Omantel dropped similarly; Oman Flour Mills and Raysut Cem faded 7% and 3%, respectively. Meanwhile, Al Jazeira Service (7%) topped the winners and Ahli Bank profited 6%.


Lingering in the negative zone for the fourth-straight session, Kuwait surrendered another 76 points on substantial losses in the investment sector. Both Ekttitab Holding and International Investment Group plunged 8%; First Dubai for RE collapsed over 13%. Nonetheless, respite returned to the services sectors as Zain (8%) grabbed the victory podium; Nat RE built-up 8%.


Despite a weak opening that saw the TASI fall 8% in early trades, strong buying support in the banking, petrochem, and agri sectors propelled Saudi 0.5% above the unchanged line, during the day. Saudi Fertiliser and Emaar EC escalated nearly 10% each; Samba Financial Group ascended 9%.
On the flip side, the industrial investment sector crumbled 8% on 9% plunge in Saudi Chem; Yamama Cem eroded 10%.


With investors cashing in gains of past two sessions, Qatar slashed over 3% to close at 8,099. The insurance (-684 points) sector took a massive blow as Doha Ins (-10%), Qatar Insurance (-10%), Al-Khaleej Insurance (-9%) all languished; Al-Ahli Bank also wilted 9% and Doha Bank withdrew 8%.
Meanwhile, capitalising on its exciting quarterly profits, Industries Qatar (2%) extended gains; Ezdan RE inched up 1%.


The DFM Index, which surged more than 22% over the last two sessions, dwindled 7% on across-the-board profit-taking spree. The real estate sector took a hit in the jaw as Emaar, Arabtec, Deyaar Devt, Union Properties all crashed 10%; notwithstanding a 75% surge in nine-month profits to Dh614 million, Gulf General Investment deleted 5%. The market breadth was very weak with A/D ratio of 0:32.

Abu Dhabi

Gripped by day-long selling deals, Abu Dhabi tumbled 2% below the centreline. The construction sector shattered 183 points, even as health care gained 2%. Foodco Holding shed 10%, Gulf Cem eroded 9%, and Emirates Driving overturned 9%. Positively, Gulf Medical Projects garnered 8% and Aabar Invt surged 5%.


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