A flat Sunday as investors test each other

The DFM is expected to continue its upward trend and witness more activity in the coming weeks (OSAMA ABUGHANIM)

The UAE markets will probably be flat today as investors try to second-guess each other's intentions.

The Dubai Financial Market took major strides last week surging 2.82 per cent, while the Abu Dhabi Securities Market also ended in the green, adding 0.13 per cent.

These gains came despite a mid-week correction and although volumes have slipped from the early week highs, most analysts believe the positive mood will remain.

"I think the market will continue its uptrend and we will see more activity in the coming weeks," said Sherif Abdul Khalek, Al Futtaim HC Securities dealing room manager. "Sunday is usually slow with buyers and sellers testing each other, so the market will probably be flat today, but the rest of the week should see more accumulation by foreign and local funds, particularly in real estate and banking."

Khalek also highlighted Tamweel and Arabtec as the probable stars this week. The former has been one of the most-in-demand Dubai stock of late, although it did fall on Thursday amid rampant profit taking. But with investors keen to reap the returns from the UAE's nascent mortgage industry, analysts tip it for further gains in the medium term.

Arabtec has enjoyed an extraordinary run, posting new record highs day after day and despite now trading above many brokers' fair value, the stock appears in rude health and could continue its advance this week.

On Thursday, it looked set for a correction, but rallied in late trading to once again make gains and as the UAE's only listed construction company it is expected to be high on investors' wish lists.

Khalek said: "Dubai is facing a small barrier at 5,800, which the market should overcome this week and then the next challenge will be to cross 6,000, but this is a more distant target.

"The round numbers are always psychological hurdles to overcome, so I expect the market will take a few attempts before it breaks this and it could be a few weeks away yet."

Meanwhile, Sorouh Real Estate has now reached its foreign ownership limit and so is expected to remain range bound until the company amends its rules. When this is concluded, the company's stock should soar, with all types of investors keen to buy into the Abu Dhabi property boom.


Net buyers

DFM Company said yesterday that foreign investors bought Dh4.221 billion worth of shares on the bourse between April 20 and 24, comprising 42.2 per cent of the total value of stock traded.

Net foreign investment on the market reached Dh778.5 million during the same period, as aggregate buy. Net institutional investment during the period under review reached Dh3.196bn, or 30.4 per cent of total value of stocks traded.