MIDEAST STOCKS-ADNOC Distribution shines in Abu Dhabi, Saudi drops

* ADNOC Distribution jumps 8 pct
* Union Properties rises in heavy trade
* Emirates NBD extends gains on Denizbank deal

DUBAI, April 7 (Reuters) – ADNOC Distribution lifted the Abu
Dhabi stock market on Sunday and Dubai continued its winning
streak, while Saudi Arabia lagged behind.
The Abu Dhabi index was up 0.4 percent, as ADNOC
Distribution rose 8 percent to a one year high of 2.7
dirhams ($0.7351).
Last week, the company’s shareholders approved an increase
in the firm’s dividend policy. The company also won shareholder
approval to buy back up to 62.5 million shares, equivalent to 5
percent of its free float during a 12-month period, should it
choose to do so.
Separately, Reuters reported that the firm was considering a
secondary listing overseas.
The Dubai index increased 0.2 percent, rising for
its seventh straight session. Union Properties was by
far the stock with the highest trading volume, gaining 0.8
Emirates NBD Bank – which Dubai-based Arqaam
Capital on Sunday called its “top buy” – added 1.3 percent after
saying last week that it will buy Denizbank.

Heavyweight Emaar Properties was down 0.4 percent,
while Shuaa Capital was up 4.3 percent. The firm is
set to merge with Abu Dhabi Financial Group soon in a reverse
Dana Gas and Eshraq Properties were
among the stocks registering the highest trading volumes in Abu
Dhabi, and they went up 0.5 percent and 0.7 percent,
Saudi Arabia’s Tadawul index was down 0.6 percent,
ending a previous 9-day gain streak pulled down by Al Rajhi Bank
which was down 1.1 percent.
“Being a Sunday, foreigners were absent (from the Saudi
market) and we suspect local investors are booking some of the
recent profits,” said Vrajesh Bhandari, senior portfolio manager
at Al Mal Capital in Dubai.
Saudi Almarai was down 0.5 percent in thin trading
volume, after what Arqaam capital called “uninspiring results”
in a report on the company’s first quarter.
Led by Ahli United Bank, which was up 2.5 percent,
Bahrain’s stock market added 1.5 percent. On Wednesday,
the bank said due diligence for a merger with Kuwait Finance
House was in progress.
Egypt’s stock market was down 0.7 percent on
Sunday, weighed down mainly by Orascom Investment Holding
, which lost 7.1 percent after reporting last week a
drop in standalone net profit.

SAUDI ARABIA The index fell 0.6 pct to 9,011 points
ABU DHABI The index rose 0.4 pct to 5,052 points
DUBAI The index added 0.2 pct to 2,781 points
QATAR The index gained was little changed at
10,192 points
EGYPT The index was down 0.7 pct at 15,135
BAHRAIN The index was up 1.5 pct at 1,440 points
OMAN The index added 0.8 pct to 3,970 points.
KUWAIT The index rose 1.4 pct to 6,222 points.

($1 = 3.6728 UAE dirham)

(Reporting by Nafisa Eltahir
Editing by Keith Weir)


Author: Prakash Poojary

Business Analyst

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