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MENAFN - Khaleej Times - 15/03/2010

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(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) UAE markets on Sunday start the new week on positive note as investor confidence rose amid hopes that the Dubai World's multi-billion dollar debt restructuring plan may get the government support.

Dubai Financial Market's General Index, or DFMGI, made its largest gain for three months as investors bet on a favourable Dubai World's debt offer. Foreign players covered short positions ahead of any Dubai World announcement and speculators moved in after bluechip stocks broke resistance levels.

Dubai Word is expected to make an announcement on its multi-billion dollar debt restructuring this month.

The DFM's benchmark index climbed 3.7 per cent to 1,746.60 points, its biggest one-day gain since December 14 and highest close since December 12. Out of 30 stocks traded yesterday, 20 posted gains while eight remain unchanged and only two fell into negative column as volume improved to 489.57 million shares from 430 million shares on Thursday.

Shuaa Capital, the biggest investment bank in UAE, surged 11.5 percent — the most in three months, and closed the day at Dh1.36. Dubai Financial Market soared 9.6 per cent to a nine-week high while Emaar Properties, the UAE's biggest property developer, soared 7.5 per cent at Dh3.75. Arabtec Holding gained 4.46 per cent to Dh2.34.

"One of the messages investors wanted to hear and got last week was that there's a possibility of a government guarantee," said Tarek Zohny, a Dubai-based trader at EFG-Hermes Holding SAE. Investors saw it as a sign that Dubai's troubles may be over, he said.

The government is "always behind" Dubai World, Shaikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Supreme Fiscal Committee and the Chief Executive of Emirates Airline and Group, said in New Delhi on Friday. The government is separating "the bad business from the good business," he said.

DP World, which is listed on the later-closing Nasdaq Dubai, is up 6.2 per cent. It is majority-owned by Dubai World.

Dubai Investment PJSC, the owner of stakes in more than 40 companies, gained 3.1 per cent to Dh1, the highest since January 11.

In the banking sector, Emirates NBD, the region's biggest bank, climbed 4.38 per cent to Dh2.62 while Dubai Islamic Bank advanced 2.46 per cent to Dh2.50.

"Stocks are undervalued compared to other markets, but the confidence is not back yet," said Samer Al Jaouni, General Manager of Middle East Financial Brokerage Company.

ADX Rally Continues
Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange's General Index, or ADXGI, rose 1.21 per cent to 2,867.77 points, its highest finish since November 25, the day Dubai World asked for a debt standstill.

Out of 25 stocks traded on ADX, 18 posted gains, two remain unchanged and five declined in a broader market. Volumes also improved to 54.92 million shares as 1,334 deals worth Dh120.78 million were recorded on the exchange.

Aldar Properties added 2.5 per cent to Dh4.12. Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank, which is among Dubai World's major domestic creditors, soared 5.8 per cent to Dh2.02.

"Traders are focusing on Dubai rather than Abu Dhabi, because Dubai is more likely to benefit from any news (on Dubai World) than Abu Dhabi," added Jaouni.

Union National Bank climbed 6.94 per cent to Dh3.39 while National Bank of Abu Dhabi rose 2.94 per cent to Dh12.25. Dana Gas advanced 2.30 per cent to 0.89 fils.

On negative side, RAK Ceramics Company declined 3.41 per cent to Dh1.70. Green Crescent Insurance Company and Union Cement dropped 2.30 and 1.84 per cent, respectively.

In terms of value, Aldar Properties remained a most active share on ADX as its Dh57.88 million shares changed hands followed by Sorouh Real Estate with Dh21.82 million shares. Aldar shares also remained on top in terms of volume as investors traded its 14.28 million shares.

Muzaffar Rizvi


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