As a sell-off on international bourses spurred regional investors to cash in gains from an early-year rally yesterday, most Gull markets fell.
ALso, the world markets suffered from the twin setbacks of a surprise drop in Chinese factory activity in May and US Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s comments signalling the bank may trim its bond purchases at one of its next policy meetings.
In Egypt, the main benchmark fell 1.4 percent, extending 2013 losses to 2.2 percent.
Foreign investors were net sellers, taking their cues from a risk-off attitude on global markets. Bluechips, their usual target, weighed on the measure.
Property developer SODIC fell 3.2 percent after reporting an 83 percent drop in first-quarter profit due to fewer deliveries of flats and houses to buyers.
“Sodic published a strong set of preliminary results, with one glaring exception which were revenues,” Loic Pelichet, assistant vice-president of research at NBK Capital said in note.
“It would seem that this is just an issue of quarterly deliveries timing. We remain buyers of the stock, and would use any weakness potentially generated by the revenue mix as a strong opportunity to add or enter.”
Elsewhere, Bahrain’s Al Salam Bank, a little-traded stock, surged 9.1 percent after the lender announced merger plans with BMI Bank, an affiliate of Oman’s Bank Muscat. The tie-up would create the kingdom’s third-largest bank by assets.
Dubai’s benchmark slipped 0.8 percent, down for a third day in four since Sunday’s 42-month high. “The correction in our markets was timed well with Bernanke’s comments, which (sparked) fears that stimulus may be cut back soon,” said Firass Yaish, business development manager at One Financial Markets.
“The fact that the losses aren’t sharp shows that local sentiment is intact and bulls will start racing again.”
Shares in builder Arabtec recovered early-session losses that were triggered by the company receiving regulatory approval for a $650 million rights issue. This will open on June 9.
The stock ended 1.7 percent higher, having been down as much as 3.8 percent intraday.
Abu Dhabi-listed Aldar Properties and Sorouh Real Estate each dipped 2.1 percent. The UAE capital’s index retreated 1.2 percent, trimming 2013 gains to 31.5 percent.
Elsewhere, the Qatar Exchange was down 37.28 points or 0.41 percent to 9,048.62 points from the previous closing of 9,085.90 points.
The volume of shares traded fell to 7,601,195 from 10,195,678 on Wednesday, and the value of shares decreased to QR321,847,502.96 from QR346,502,883.46 on Wednesday.
Among the top losers were Qatar National Bank whose share dropped 0.63 percent to QR143.10, International Islamic Bank lost 2.39 percent to QR53.20, Barwa Real Estate fell 1.34 percent to QR25.70 and National Leasing down 1.24 percent to QR35.75.
The Qatar Banking and Financial sector yesterday lost 0.53 points while the Insurance sector down 0.40 points.
The Qatar industrial sector dropped 0.09 points and the Services sector added 0.39 points.
Source : Qatar Chronicle
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