Abu Dhabi index falls the most in 9 months, leads regional losses

Losses were also more than that seen on Brexit day as investors turn risk averse

Gulf News

Dubai: Abu Dhabi index fell the most in nine months, breaching the single day losses seen even in Brexit, weighed by selling pressure in etisalat, which fell the most in three months, and a few banking stocks.

Abu Dhabi index fell more than 2 per cent, breaching the fall seen in January 2016. The fall was also bigger than seen on the Brexit day, when the index fell 1.82 per cent.

Etisalat was the major loser, along with other banking stocks like First Gulf Bank and National Bank of Abu Dhabi Bank. Etisalat, which has been steady of late, fell 2 per cent to be at Dh19.30, the biggest fall since July 17.

“There is a lack of interest in the market. The sentiment is still mainly driven by regional and international markets. The issue here is not local, but more based on a common sentiment all over,” said Marwan Shurrab, fund manager and head of trading at Vision Investments & Holdings.

Turnover has been on a lower side. Traded volumes on Abu Dhabi bourse fell to Dh110 million, while in Dubai, total traded volumes came in at Dh239 million.

The Dubai Financial Market General Index closed 0.89 per cent lower at 3,272.37. Emaar Properties closed more than 2 per cent lower at Dh6.44, while Arabtec was down 0.75 per cent at Dh1.33. Gulf Finance House rose 3.88 per cent to end at Dh1.07.

“People are still waiting for the more financials to come out, so that they could position themselves,” said Shurrab. Emirates NBD, the UAE’s largest lender reported a net profit of Dh5.4 billion for the first nine months of 2016, up 8 per cent compared to the same period last year.

“There has been selling in Saudi Arabia on individual stock basis,” said Shurrab. The sentiment in that market has been impacted by a cut in government spending amid lack of liquidity in the market. Saudi Arabia’s Tadawul index was 1.25 per cent lower at 5,562.04. The index has shed nearly 25 per cent in the past one year.