The Dubai Financial Market (DFM) recorded a minuscule fall yesterday owing to range-bound trading coupled with profit booking following three sessions of marginal gains.
The general index eased 8.43 points to close at 1588.36, a fall of 0.53 per cent. The index had risen by 1.73 per cent over the previous three sessions and trading yesterday was dominated by retail investors – who like to take advantage of every marginal gain – in the absence of major institutional support.
"The market is moving in limited range," Eyad Abdulnabi, Chief Operating Officer of Al Ramz Securities, told Emirates Business. "There's nothing to say about the trading in the absence of any major news influencing sentiment. We saw some profit booking in selected stocks that had risen marginally and investors preferred to cash in on quick deals. Arabtec came under pressure ahead of its results and Emaar eased owing to minor profit booking deals."
Islamic Arab Insurance (Salama) and Ajman Bank dropped on quick profit booking, which eroded the previous session's gains.
DFM witnessed a marginal drop in the trading turnover as the bourse recorded transactions worth Dh160.59 million, a 21.86 per cent fall from Monday's Dh205.54m. More than 99 million shares changed hands yesterday in 2,421 deals involving 30 stocks. "The participation of foreign investors is still minimal," added Abdulnabi. "Jeema went up unusually but that was no big deal and was not caused by anything specific."
Mirroring the underlying uncertainty on the market, 19 stocks declined, seven advanced and four closed flat.
Barring consumer staples, all the remaining sub-indices closed in the red as finance/investment, telecom and utilities closed with losses of more than one per cent while banks, insurance, realty and transport lost less than one per cent. Jeema alone helped the consumer staples index close higher as the mineral water company gained 4.96 per cent to close at Dh5.50.
The index opened weakly and moved in a restricted range as Emaar, Arabtec, Aman, Takaful-Emarat traded higher and Ajman Bank, du, DIB, Deyaar, DSI and Salama traded lower.
Emaar eased 0.33 per cent to close at Dh2.99 and the technical charts showed that the stock was trading below its 14-day moving average of Dh3.02.
At 11am, the index, aided by Emaar, climbed through the key 1600 mark as Arabtec, DFM, Air Arabia and du turned flat.
The index slipped below 1600 points again around noon as Arabtec, Air Arabia turned flat and du and Ajman Bank slipped further. The trading value in the first two hours stood at Dh87.67m. From 12.30pm onwards the market started showing a downward movement as Emaar turned weaker while Arabtec joined the list of losers.
Shiv Prakash, a senior technical analyst at MAC Capital, said: "Intraday, the market is expected to be in the range between the support level of 1570 and the 1600 resistance level."
DFM suspended trading in Gulfa yesterday because it did not disclose the results of its board meeting on February 27. However, trading later resumed following the disclosure of the results. DFM also suspended trading in AOIC from noon ahead of its AGM and EGM. Trading in the stock will resume once the results are announced.
Emirates Islamic Bank said its annual meeting and an extraordinary meeting would be held on March 23.
All eyes on Arabtec
Arabtec shed early gains yesterday as the stock faced speculative selling pressure.
Arabtec fell 2.33 per cent to close at Dh2.10 ahead of the announcement of its yearly earnings.
The firm disclosed the results of its board meeting to the bourse and its earnings numbers were expected to be announced after trading ended. The results are expected to provide a major boost to the market, which has been moving sideways in the absence of any positive trigger.
Index fails to stay above 1600
Contrary to expectations, the DFM General Index failed to close above the psychologically important 1600-point barrier yesterday.
The index breached the key 1600-point mark four times in a one-hour period of trading between 11am and noon but failed to remain above this level in the absence of the necessary strong volumes.
"For markets to turn bullish in the short term we need to see an increase in volumes with a break above the1650 resistance level," said Shiv Prakash, a senior technical analyst at MAC Capital.
"Otherwise it may continue to move lower towards 1540/1510 in the coming weeks as the market trade below the 1600 supports."
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