Dubai’s stock market

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Construction sector lifts Dubai stock market

06 February 2014

Bullish outlook from the emirate’s leading construction companies boosts Dubai’s stock market

Dubai’s stock market rose 4.3 per cent in the week ending 6 February on the back of construction companies’ growth plans and positive earnings results.

The surge made up for the Dubai Financial Market’s (DFM) 0.7 per cent decline in the last week of January, which had been spurred by concerns of China’s economic slowdown and sell-offs in international markets.

Arabtec registered the largest percentage increase, its share price rising 15.2 per cent week-on-week. The jump followed the Dubai-based developer’s announcement that it secured a $6bn contract involving the building of 37 towers and plans to hire 10,000 youths across the region.

Union Properties, which saw its yearly profit increase to AED1.6bn ($435.6m) in 2013, rose 13.4 per cent. Drake & Scull International’s stock went up 11.3 per cent amid news that it won an $87.5m contract for King Saud University, as well as a contract to build The Pointe mall on Palm Jumeirah in Dubai.

Emaar Properties, which was upgraded to investment grade by ratings agency Standard & Poor’s on 5 February, rose 8.3 per cent compared with a week earlier.

Dubai’s stock market, up 15 percent in just over a month, has been overbought for three consecutive months as investors have high hopes for the emirate’s economic growth. That follows a year of exponential growth for the exchange – in 2013, the DFM rose 110 per cent after companies rose up from relatively low valuations.

Foreign investors may also start looking to the GCC stock markets following the MSCI upgrade to emerging markets status in May. International funds could choose to increase their exposure to the GCC as the US’ Federal Reserve’s changes in its monetary stimulus programme are felt across the world.

Other countries classified as an emerging market – such as India and Brazil – have seen their markets drop over the past month, but the GCC is relatively immune to this trend. Its currencies are pegged to the US dollar and current account balances are strong, mainly because of high oil revenues.

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