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UAE equity markets seesaw in lacklustre trading

Benchmark Dubai index inches up as retail investors hold sway.

Gulf News

Dubai: UAE stock markets continued to move sideways without any signal towards a trend, either negative or positive, as retail investors held sway in what was a lacklustre trading on Monday.

Only 197.77 million shares, valued at Dh308.08 million, changed hands on the Dubai Financial Market exchange. The DFM General Index moved up 1.23 per cent to close at 1,757.02.

The real estate index, led by Emaar Properties, Arabtec, Union Properties, rose 3.01 per cent. Emaar advanced 2.90 per cent to Dh2.48; Arabtec was up 4.66 per cent to end at Dh2.02. Union Properties increased 3.85 per cent to Dh0.85. Air Arabia gained 3.26 per cent to end at Dh0.95 and Dubai Financial Market company advanced 4.51 per cent to close at Dh1.39.

"There's nothing much going on," said Mousa Haddad, head of trade, discretionary mandate, National Bank of Abu Dhabi.

"There's no good news in the offing and all factors have been priced in. The day traders are now trying to push it up to 1,800 levels and once it reaches that level, they will offload the shares. It's typical of them. Volumes are really low with institutions on the sidelines and foreigners being net sellers. There are no fundamental reasons for the movements we are seeing in the market."

Haddad however doesn't expect any good news coming any time soon which could be a catalyst for the market.

Shiv Prakash, equity investment analyst, technical, at Mac Capital Advisors, however, sees some hope based on his study of technical charts. "Market still trades below the critical resistance of 1,800 and a clear breakout on these resistance areas will be a very positive for markets. As of now the trend remains sideways between 1,700 and 1,800 levels."

The Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange Index was marginally up, advancing 0.57 per cent to close at 2,514.81. Volumes were also low on the exchange at 106.69 million shares with a total turnover of Dh209.71 million. Gainers beat losers 22 to 12.