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Gulf stock markets slip as oil rally pauses

Oversupply continues to weigh on the market (Reuters)

By Reuters

Most Gulf stock markets slipped in early trade on Monday after an oil rally paused and local companies reported less-than-stellar results.

Oil prices moved little on Monday after surging at the end of last week, with an oversupply continuing to weigh on the market despite data showing Japan had pulled out of recession.

Dubai's index slipped 0.7 per cent as most stocks declined. Developer Emaar Properties, which on Sunday reported a 14 per cent increase in fourth-quarter profit, bucked the downward trend to edge up 0.5 per cent.

Smaller rival Deyaar and low-cost carrier Air Arabia, both of which reported disappointing earnings on Sunday, fell 1.5 and 0.6 per cent, respectively.
Abu Dhabi’s benchmark eased 0.4 per cent. Aldar Properties, the emirate’s biggest listed developer, fell 1.8 per cent after announcing that its chief development officer, Gurjit Singh, was leaving the company to pursue other interests.

Qatar’s bourse slipped 0.3 per cent. United Development dropped 2 per cent after releasing its earnings on Sunday, even though the company nearly doubled its net profit and proposed a cash dividend of 1.25 riyals per share, up from 0.95 riyals a year earlier.

In Muscat, telecom operator Omantel added 1.1 per cent after keeping its dividend for the second half of 2014 flat despite an 11 per cent fall in fourth-quarter profit. Oman’s index edged up 0.2 per cent.