Banking and real estate stocks keep ADX afloat; index edges up

The Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange, led by First Gulf Bank, Finance House and Waha Capital, moved up marginally yesterday as stocks such as ADNH, Arkan, UNB and Julphar put the index under pressure.

Reflecting the sideways trading, the general index added 21 points to close at 2,724.56 points, a gain of 0.78 per cent.

In the absence of any major negative or positive factors, the retail investors and institutions face a dilemma over the direction.

"It was flat trading," Taimur Saadat, Head of Technical Analysis at Arab Capital Markets Resource Center, told Emirates Business. "However, the ADX is more stable than the DFM. There is no major institutional participation in the market and this resulted in lacklustre trading. Foreign investors are not involved in a big way, while the funds are also watching the situation carefully.

"Once they see signs of a bullish trend, then only they will enter the market."

ADX witnessed trading turnover of Dh113.88 million as 52.22 million shares changed hands in 1,431 deals involving 30 stocks. Seventeen stocks moved up, six fell and seven closed at their previous levels.

Aldar, FGB, Sorouh, Dana Gas and etisalat were the top contributors to the turnover. FH, GCIC, GCEM, FGB and Waha Capital were the biggest gainers, while ADNH, Rapco, Julphar, Methaq and UNB were the heaviest losers.

Positive factors such as the rise of the Asian markets and oil prices failed to influence the market as much as anticipated. The Asian markets traded higher yesterday while the oil price hovered above $80 a barrel.

"Oil prices are stable at $80 per barrel," said Saadat.

"Considering the present conditions in the market, a few dollars up or down will not have much impact on the ADX."

Insurance, consumer and health care stocks closed in the red while the realty, construction, banking, industrial and energy indices closed with gains of more than one per cent. Union National Bank fell 0.99 per cent to Dh3.00 but the remaining banking stocks closed higher. Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank added 1.22 per cent and closed at Dh1.66, Adib moved up 2.21 per cent to Dh2.86 and Bank of Sharjah added 1.01 per cent to close at Dh2.00.

Aabar and Taqa were the main gainers among the energy stocks.

Brisk trading

First Gulf Bank and Finance House saw brisk trading yesterday following the announcement of the respective board meetings.

FGB informed the exchange that its board has approved 50 per cent cash dividend and the bank also forecasts double digit growth in the business for 2010 year. This brought cheer to the market as the stock moved up 5.34 per cent to close at Dh17.90.

Finance House was top gainer on the bourse. The company informed the exchange about its general assembly meeting. Its shares surged 10 per cent and closed at Dh8.14.

Gulf Markets weak

Contrary to expectations that the Gulf markets would open on a positive note as investors tracked upbeat global markets, the GCC bourses traded in a narrow range.

The easing concerns about fiscally-strapped Greece and the rise in oil prices failed to boost market sentiment. All seven GCC bourses moved in a range of less than one per cent.

The UAE bourses were the day's gainers while Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Muscat and Bahrain closed in the red. Banking stocks pulled the Saudi's Tadawul lower as Riyad Bank, Samba and Banque Saudi Fransi witnessed profit booking.

 

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