The Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange (ADX) snapped a nine-session uptrend yesterday and fell by 51.17 points, or 2.08 per cent, to close the day at 2403.46 points.
Seven of the 32 stocks traded advanced during the session, while 25 closed with losses. More than 91 million shares were traded in 2,058 trading calls, at a total value of Dh143 million. Prominent among the stocks facing selling pressures were the RAKCC, Aabar, Sorouh and Aldar stocks.
Mohamed Galal, Head of Foreign Institutional sales, Al Futtaim Securities, said: "Volumes were slow on the ADX as the focus has been on global activity. Anyhow, foreign investors are not going to have any significant impact, as the local players have taken the lead for sometime."
Taqa outperformed the index and stood bullish crossing the resistance of Dh1.75 and forming a high of Dh1.88. It closed at Dh1.87. The stock looks bullish until its next resistance level of Dh2-2.40.
Mathew Wakeman, Managing Director, Cash and Equity Linked Trading, EFG Hermes, said: "The ADX is just managing to stay positive so far the year. It is a clear performer in the region right now, but there is also a lack of direction here as it is finding it hard to disconnect from a region moving lower. These short cycles of strength followed by lows are set to be with us for a while until we see significant foreign cash inflows. The cash is on the sidelines, but its deployment doesn't look like beginning anytime soon."
If the intraday market remains below 2,420 points, a lower support level of 2,383-2,364 can be expected. Bullishness can be seen only if trading take place above the pivot levels. Higher resistance exists at 2,439-2,476 points.
Barring consumer, healthcare and energy sectors, stocks of other sectors such as telecom, construction, banking, insurance and real estate were under selling pressure during the session.
Construction and real estate sectors were the worst hit on the ADX as Aldar and Sorouh came under pressure.
These two stocks, along with Taqa and Waha were the main active stocks by value and volume, while FGB was also traded actively. GMPC, Asmak, SCIDC were the major gainers while OEIHC, UCC, Adaviation and RAKCC fell in the range of 8-10 per cent.
It was also announced by the ADX that the Union Cement Company has amended its dividend record date to April 5, 2009.
All other stock markets in the Gulf also witnessed a downtrend yesterday. Qatari shares plunged more than 3 per cent to their lowest close in more than five years. The Doha index fell 3.14 percent to 4,230 points, its lowest close since February 17, 2004.
Market experts foresee the near term outlook for the ADX as positive based on the significant trading volume seen during the session. However, investors need to keep an eye on global developments, as sensitive international cues would impact trading patterns, analysts said.
Since the market is driven by the local investors and region-based funds, there would not be adverse speculative transactions in it, "because foreign investors' role has been minimal during the past couple of months," said Galal.