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MENAFN - Khaleej Times - 08/03/2010

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(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Dubai Financial Market on Sunday made its largest gain in three weeks as an end-of-week surge on global markets, firmer oil prices, and increasing market speculation of an imminent Dubai World debt plan announcement spurred buying in real estate and banking stocks.

Emaar Properties PJSC advanced the most in two months as its Indian joint venture got approval for a share sale. Emaar shares climbed six per cent to Dh3.17, the highest rise since January 3.

India's capital market regulator approved a plan by Emaar MGF Land Limited to sell shares in an initial public offering. The company said its board will consider an "opportune time" for the sale.

Arabtec Holding climbed 3.9 per cent to Dh2.16 after its chief finance officer was quoted by a newswire as saying the builder's 1.7 billion stake sale to Aabar Investments would be completed in April.

Dubai Financial Market General Index rose 2.33 per cent, the most since January 25, to 1,621.73 points, and trading volume hit a three-week high to 166.75 million shares. Out of 30 stocks traded yesterday, 24 posted gains, three remained unchanged and three declined as the shares worth Dh279.37 million were traded on the exchange.

"It's a technical rebound after the market had been bearish for a while," said Vyas Jayabhanu, head of investments, Al Dhafra Financial Broker. But he added that a recent rise in oil prices has also helped improve market sentiment.

"Oil above 80 is a positive factor and the market seems optimistic that something positive from Dubai World will come in," added Jayabhanu.

Musa Haddad, head of MENA equity desk at National Bank of Abu Dhabi, said the DMFGI seems to have formed a new support which could lead to further gains. "The index holding above 1,615-point barrier is a bullish signal," he said.

Technical analysts said Emaar which is undergoing a corrective bounce towards Dh3.30 will help lift the whole market.

Banks lead Abu Dhabi Up
In Abu Dhabi, explorer and producer Dana Gas PJSC gained after announcing two gas discoveries in Egypt. Its share price increased 3.7 per cent to Dh0.84, the highest since January 5.

But overall banks lead the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange's General Index to its highest close in nearly two weeks, tracking gains in other Gulf Arab bourses as global sentiment rose. The benchmark index climbed, 20.46 points, or 0.75 per cent, to 2,747.29 points, its highest finish since February 23.

National Bank of Umm Al-Qaiwaim was among the top gainer by surging eight per cent to Dh3.25. National Bank of Abu Dhabi climbed 2.8 per cent to Dh11.45 and Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank rose 2.4 per cent to Dh1.73. On negative side, Union National Bank dropped 2.67 per cent to Dh2.92.

In the property sector, Aldar added 0.6 per cent to Dh3.48, recovering slightly from Thursday's eight-month low as investors showed little reaction to its downgrade by ratings agency Moody's. Sorouh Real Estate moved slightly higher at Dh2.15.

"Sentiment is not that great after the Moody's downgrade, which will have an adverse impact on the market, but investors have absorbed a lot of bad news recently and so this is just one more thing on their plate," added Jayabhanu.

In terms of value, Aldar Properties remained a most active share on ADX as its Dh48.71 million shares changed hands. In terms of volume, Dana Gas remained on top as its 29.43 million shares were traded on the exchange.

New Tick System Revised
The Dubai Financial Market will revise changes to the way it lists stocks, it said in an e-mailed statement on Sunday.

In an abrupt U-turn, the bourse said only stocks worth less than one dirham would trade to three decimal places from March 11, instead of two on Sunday.

DFM said on March 4 stocks worth less than Dh10 would qualify for the above change. For securities valued above Dh10, the minimum decimal fraction would have been reduced to Dh0.01 from Dh0.05, but this amendment has also been put on hold.

The DFM offered no explanation for the U-turn and was not immediately available for comment, but some brokers have welcomed the decision to phase in reforms more gradually.

By Muzaffar Rizvi

 






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