Hesham Abdulla Al Qassim, vice-chairman and managing director of Emirates NBD, rang the market-opening bell yesterday on the Nasdaq Dubai to celebrate the listing of a $1 billion conventional bond. The bank has of late driven gains on the DFM. Image Credit: Courtesy: Emirates NBD

Dubai: Traders on Dubai bourse shifted their attention to smaller property stocks after rallying on the back of Emaar Properties, and Emirates NBD, resulting in the highest traded volume for the year.

Traded volume on the Dubai Financial Market (DFM) reached 440 million shares, breaching December’s level of 343 million shares. Union Properties was the main contributor to the traded volume. About 132 million shares changed hands, nearly 9 times of the 30-day average of 14 million shares. Traded volume in Gulf Finance House almost doubled to 40 million shares. Union Properties closed 5.93 per cent higher at Dh0.411, while GFH closed flat at Dh1.06.

Salama Insurance continued its gaining streak and closed 2 per cent higher at Dh0.561. The Dubai Financial Market general index closed 0.47 per cent lower at 2,791.87.

In other stocks in Dubai, DP World closed 0.29 per cent higher at $17.3, while Emaar Properties closed 1 per cent lower at Dh4.93

The Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange general index closed 0.16 per cent lower at 5,213.63. First Abu Dhabi Bank snapped a gaining streak, closing 0.88 per cent lower at Dh15.82. Eshraq Properties rose 7 per cent to end at Dh0.54. Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank closed 2.85 per cent higher at Dh9.37.

Union National Bank closed 0.18 per cent lower at Dh5.40.

UPP shares, volume see surge Image Credit: DFM/Gulf News

Saudi Tadawul index was half a per cent higher at 9,134.37 amid lower foreign buying. Foreign buying is not as much as it was in March. Foreign buying was at $40 billion (Dh147 billion) per day, about 30-40 per cent lower than the numbers reported in March.

“These are passive flows, They will keep coming. The second deadline for FTSE emerging market index is on April 30, we would see more money,” Mohammad Shabbir, Head of Funds and Portfolios at Saudi Kuwaiti Finance House (SKFH) told Gulf News.

Saudi Tadawul has been the best performing index in the region. The gauge has gained 6.46 per cent so far in the month, outperforming other regional indices.

“There is no direction in the market. Market is looking for confirmation on oil prices and first quarter results. The markets are expected to remain sideways for 5-6 weeks. The next trigger could be corporate news on mergers or acquisitions,” Shabbir said. The index has gained 16 per cent in the year so far followed by the Egyptian index, which has gained 15 per cent.