Dubai stocks dipped as subdued earnings from one of its key lenders - Dubai Islamic Bank - weighed on sentiments, while dividend-hunting led gains in other Gulf markets.
Dubai Financial Market dropped 0.8 per cent to 2,621 points with most losses coming from banking stocks. Dubai Islamic Bank slipped 2.6 per cent after full-year profit shrank 38 per cent to Dh3.16 billion from Dh5.10 billion, mainly as impairment charges more than doubled to Dh4.55 billion.
The lender attributed the lower profits to its "deliberate and pointed prudent approach" to provisioning. The bank's operating expenses also increased by 16 per cent primarily as funds were allocated for integration of Noor Bank.
Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange edged up 0.2 per cent to 5,662 points on the back of financial stocks with First Abu Dhabi Bank advancing 0.7 per cent to Dh14.9 and Waha Capital gaining 1.6 per cent after earlier this week announcing it turned profitable in 2020 from being a loss-maker in 2019.
RAK Properties ticked up 2.2 per cent adding to the previous session gains, when it announced a 22 per cent jump in full-year profits credited to higher revenues.
Kuwait's premier index gained 0.6 per cent to 6,249 points, with Human Soft Holding surging 8.1 per cent to its highest single-day gain after fourth-quarter profits shot up nealy 37 per cent mainly due to improved cost efficiency. Its board has recommended dividends whereas no profit was distributed to shareholders last year.
Up on dividend
Bahrain index traded 0.4 per cent higher to 1,468 points. Bank of Bahrain and Kuwait soared 5.1 per cent after its board proposed 20 fils per share cash dividends and 1 bonus share for every 10 held despite full-year profits dropping to BD52 million from BD75.4 million a year before.
Qatar Exchange slipped 0.1 per cent to 10,447 points. Barwa Real Estate traded 0.8 per cent lower after its full-year profits decreased 19 per cent to QR1.2 billion forcing the company to cut back dividends to QR0.125 from QR0.2 a year earlier.