Dubai stock market falls to its lowest level in more than five years

The Dubai bourse fell to its lowest level in more than five years on Thursday, as property stocks continued to fall, while weak oil prices weighed on the Saudi market.

Oil has fallen about 5 percent after OPEC hinted it might agree to cut output less than expected, amid concern over the economic impact of trade tensions, which has hurt global stocks.

The Dubai index fell 2 percent, its lowest level since September 2013, with Emaar Properties, the emirate's largest real estate developer, down 4.3 percent. Emaar has lost a third of its value this year.

Amir Badran, an analyst at Naim Brokerage, said the oversupply in Dubai's real estate market had become more apparent during the second half of the year and was unlikely to dissipate soon.

Property prices fall in Dubai
Property prices in Dubai fell 7.4 percent year-on-year in the third quarter, accelerating from a 5.8 percent drop in the previous quarter, the central bank said in a report on Tuesday.

Union Properties lost 9.9 percent in heavy trading, while Dubai Investment fell 6.8 percent.

Dubai Ports World, listed on Nasdaq Dubai, fell 2.6 percent after the company said it was close to a deal to buy Univerider Group for 660 million euros ($ 748 million).

Saudi Stock Exchange
Saudi Arabia's main index fell 0.4 percent, under pressure from bank and petrochemical stocks. Saudi Basic Industries Corp (SABIC) lost 0.3 percent, while Al Rajhi Bank fell 0.8 percent.

However, Sahara Petrochemical Co rose 1.6 percent in intensive trading after Saudi International Petrochemical Company (Sipchem) announced its intention to enter into a trade merger with Sahara, the latter becoming a subsidiary of Sipchem and its shares are being delisted. Sipchem fell 1.7 percent.

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Egypt's main stock index fell 1.6 percent, with 25 of the 30 stocks on its list down, under pressure from new banking rules.

Commercial International Bank (CIB), Egypt's largest listed bank, fell 4 percent after it filed an update on the proposed tax law on treasury holdings. The bank said the adjustments would not affect the results of 2018, but it forecast a 5 percent fall in profits in 2019, depending on whether the tax treatment would include provisions for loan losses.

Heliopolis Housing fell 4.9 percent after the company signed a 1.2 billion Egyptian pound ($ 67.1 million) loan agreement.

Abu Dhabi's general index rose 1 percent, helped by the rise of Abu Dhabi's first bank, the largest bank in the UAE, 2.5 percent.

Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank gained 1.1 percent, while National Bank of Ras Al Khaimah rose 3.2 percent.

Qatar's index closed flat, with Qatar National Bank gaining 1.4 percent, while Aridi Telecom rose 1.7 percent.

Following are the closing levels of the Middle East stock market indices:
- Saudi Arabia: The index fell 0.4 percent to 7849 points.

- The Dubai index fell 2 percent to 2,580 points.

- Abu Dhabi - The index rose 1 percent to 4,877 points.

- Qatar .. The index stabilized at 10598 points.

- Egypt .. The index fell 1.6 percent to 12,388 points.

KUWAIT: The index rose 0.8 percent to 5,435 points.

- Bahrain .. The index fell 0.2 percent to 1320 points.

- Sultanate of Oman .. The index stabilized at 4549 points.


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