Dubai Financial Market shares outperform in sluggish Gulf market

Shares in the Gulf’s only listed stock exchange operator outperformed during morning trade on Tuesday as most of the region moved little because of soft global equities and an overnight drop in oil prices.

Dubai Financial Market (DFM) surged 3.0 percent after it made a net profit of 78.5 million dirhams ($21.4 million) in the fourth quarter, five times what it made in the prior-year period. Quarterly revenue increased to 131.2 million dirhams from 69.3 million dirhams as the market’s trading turnover ballooned late last year, buoyed by a recovery of oil prices.

Dubai’s main stock index, however, edged down 0.2 percent as Emaar Properties, which has not yet reported quarterly earnings, fell 1.3 percent.

Banking shares helped lift Abu Dhabi’s index 0.3 percent higher. National Bank of Abu Dhabi rose 0.8 percent and First Gulf Bank (FGB) was up 0.4 percent.

NBAD said on Tuesday it aimed to double the size of its debt issuance to $15 billion but did not give reasons or say how the programme would fit into the lender’s planned merger with FGB, due to take place at the start of next quarter.

In Saudi Arabia, the general index edged up 0.1 percent in the first 35 minutes of trade with gainers outnumbering decliners 73 to 52.

Oil shipper National Shipping Co (Bahri) rose 1.1 percent after saying it had received the first very large crude carrier in an order from Hyundai Samho Heavy Industries and expected the ship’s commercial operations to start next month.

Kuwait’s index resumed falling sharply on profit-taking after January’s sharp rise; the index dropped 1.6 percent. Many fund managers believe valuations no longer support sharp rises from current levels.

Source: Reuters