The Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Muscat stock markets fell sharply today, due to sales by international and local portfolios. Muscat fell by 1.5%, the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange (ADX) by 1.1% and Dubai Financial Market (DFM) by 1%.
The Tadawul, the only winner today, rose slightly by 0.38%, while Bahrain, Doha and Kuwait fell by 0.83%, 0.60% and 0.18% respectively.
The return of tension over Iran's nuclear issue with the west pushed international investors, mainly in UAE, into selling, while the absence of speculators contributed to the decline in the GCC markets.
UAE markets losses at Dhs8.5bn
UAE shares lost more than Dhs8.5bn of their market value, although trading value improved on the DFM, reaching Dhs1.2bn today. But there was low trading on the ADX, reaching Dhs378.3m.
Heavyweight shares Emaar and Emirates NBD remained unchanged, while other small value shares pushed the market down.
Arabtec unexpectedly fell sharply by 5%, Shuaa Capital by 6% and Tamweel by 3.2%. Dubai Islamic Bank dropped 0.61%, Dubai Investments 2.1% and DFM by 1.5%.
Takaful's share rose by its maximum limit of 15%, while Gulf General Investments rose 7.1%.
Dealers in the market believe that foreign sales and Iran's nuclear issue are the main cause behind the decline. Foreign sales reached Dhs451.3m against purchasing of Dhs285.1m. Arab and GCC investors bought Dhs199.7m against selling of Dhs164.5m worth of shares.
Abu Dhabi: real estate pressurises index
The decline on the ADX was led by the energy and real estate sectors, amid a low trading value of under Dhs400m. This included Dhs143.7m for Aldar shares, which fell by 2%.
Other leading shares also declined, including Sorouh, which fell by 1.3%, Dana Gas by 1% and Methaq by 2.7%.
Tadawul up after nine declining sessions
The Saudi market rose today, after nine declining sessions amid a low trading value of SR3.6bn, compared to SR7bn last month.
The banking and telecoms sectors rebounded today, while cement, insurance and media continued to decline.
Al Rajhi Bank rose 1.2% and Samba 1.9%, while Saudi French Bank declined by 2.2%. In the petrochemical sector, Sabic closed unchanged, while Petrorabigh rose 0.93% and Kayan by 1%.
Analysts believe that the current prices of some leading shares are very attractive for investors.
Fewer losses in Kuwaiti market
The Kuwait Stock Exchange posted fewer losses today, after support from the banking sector.
Companies that had posted H1 losses, made strong gains in the market today, including Burgan Group, which rose 6.5% and Salboukh, up 4.5%.
Profit taking in Muscat
The Muscat market lost all gains achieved yesterday and declined sharply by 1.5%, after pressure on leading shares.
Gulfar Engineering traded OR1.8m out of total trading of OR9.6m, but fell by 5.6%. Omantel and Muscat Bank fell by 1% and 1.1% respectively, despite the strong profits achieved by Omantel in H1.
Sohar Bank traded 3.2 million shares, representing 22% of the total traded shares and rose by 1.2%.
Doha: Al Mawashi down, Al Manai up
The Doha market continued to decline, after extensive sales by foreign and local investors, amid a low trading value of QR424m. In total, 8.8 million shares were traded, including 3.4 million for Al Rayan Bank, which closed unchanged.
Al Mawashi's share experienced profit taking and fell today by 4.8%, while Al Manai rose for a second day, by 2.3%, after rising by its maximum limit of 10% yesterday. This came after the company posted a 60% rise in H1 profits.
Bahrain market continues downward trend
The Bahraini market continued to decline, after pressure from the banking and investments sectors, while other sectors remained unchanged.
Low trading continued to dog the market, reaching just BD600,000 and one million shares. One third of those were for Al Baraka Group, which rose by 0.40%.
Saudi Bahraini Bank declined by 3.5%, BNB by 1.4%, Ithmaar 1.3% and GFH by 1.3%.