Global worries drag Gulf markets down

12:50, May 25, 2010      

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Despite state-owned conglomerate Dubai World's 23.5 billion U.S. dollar debt restructuring, which was announced last week, the Dubai Financial Market (DFM) posted the largest loss Monday among Gulf markets, plummeting 2 percent to 1,646.73 points.

Most real estate stocks weakened as fears of an ongoing debt crisis in the European Union spread globally. Market bellwether Emaar Properties lost almost 3 percent and closed at 3.58 dirhams (about 0.97 dollars). Trading volumes remained low as most local investors preferred to stay on the sidelines.

Gulf and foreign shareholders continued to sell their investments. With a loss of 8.70 percent on a year-to-date basis, the DFM is underperforming all other Arab exchanges.

At Dubai's international exchange Nasdaq Dubai, port operator Dubai Ports World closed at a 10-week low at 0.43 dollars, down 2.27 percent.

In Saudi Arabia, the Tadawul stock market fell to a three-month-low, ending 1.50 percent lower at 6,177.25 points. As oil prices failed to pick up significantly from around 70 dollars per barrel, oil-sensitive markets, such as Abu Dhabi's ADX and Kuwait's KSE, remained under pressure as well. The ADX and KSE closed respectively at 2,735.85 points, down 0.82 percent, and at 6,988.60 points, down 0.12 percent.

The Qatar Exchange closed at a three-month low as well, finishing 0.52 percent lower at 6,938.57 points.



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