Bloomberg News

Dubai Shares Drop to 3-Month Low on Greek Crisis, Oil Decline

May 16, 2012

Dubai’s shares fell to the lowest in more than three months, following Asian and European markets, as talks to form a new Greek government failed and oil tumbled.

Arabtec Holding PJSC (ARTC), the United Arab Emirates’ biggest publicly traded construction company, dropped 1 percent, while Emaar Properties PJSC (EMAAR), developer of the world’s tallest skyscraper, retreated the most since May 14. The DFM General Index (DFMGI) declined 1.4 percent to 1,466.08, the lowest close since Feb. 2. The Bloomberg GCC 200 Index (BGCC200) slipped 0.5 percent.

Asian and European markets fell, adding to losses in the U.S., amid deepening speculation Greece will have to leave the euro-currency bloc. New elections in Greece may be scheduled as early as June 10 after President Karolos Papoulias failed to broker a governing coalition in meetings yesterday with Pasok party head Evangelos Venizelos and other political leaders.

The drop “was expected due to the uncertainty in Greece, which is affecting international markets as a whole,” said Marwan Shurrab, vice-president at Gulfmena Investments Ltd. “Commodities have been losing ground, down almost 12 percent this month, which is affecting sentiment to a certain extent as they reflect the surpluses of the governments in the region.”

Oil slid after U.S. crude stockpiles increased and on concern over Europe. Crude for June delivery decreased as much as 2.3 percent to $91.81 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange, the lowest intraday price since Nov. 3. Gulf Arab oil exporters, including Saudi Arabia and the U.A.E., supply about a fifth of the world’s oil.

Volumes Decline

Dubai’s benchmark index has dropped 16 percent from this year’s peak in March, leaving the 31 companies on Dubai’s index valued at 9.8 times estimated earnings compared with 12.1 times for Saudi Arabia’s Tadawul All Share Index (SASEIDX), according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The kingdom’s measure was little changed today and retreated 1.7 percent this week.

Arabtec decreased to 2.89 dirhams, the lowest close since May 13. Emaar declined 1.7 percent to 2.89 dirhams.

About 78 million shares traded in Dubai, compared with this year’s peak of 835 million.

Elsewhere in the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council, Qatar’s QE Index (DSM) and Abu Dhabi’s ADX General Index (ADSMI) fell 0.3 percent, while Bahrain’s and Kuwait’s measures were little changed. Oman’s benchmark stock index rose 1 percent after declining 1.2 percent yesterday.

To contact the reporter on this story: Arif Sharif in Dubai at asharif2@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Claudia Maedler at cmaedler@bloomberg.net


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