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Dubai bourse, Arabtec shares hit 2-month low on Syria jitters

It was once again back to square one for the Dubai stock exchange on Monday as the market measure DFMGI plummeted 2% to 2,324.54, a 2-month low. The market's fall was halted only half an hour before the closure after U. S. secretary of state John F. Kerry said, Syrian president Bashar al-Assad could avoid war if he was "handing over his chemical weapons to the international community". Blue chip shares Emaar and Arabtec lost 0.93% and 2.29%, respectively, finishing at Dhs5.30 and Dhs2.13. The UAE's first lender Emirates NBD dived 5.60% to close at Dhs4.90. Al Salam Bahrain Bahrain (ASBB) gained 1.71%, to reach Dhs0.831. Earlier in the day, the Islamic bank said it agreed to merge with its local counterpart BMI Bank. "Under the terms of the proposed business combination, ASBB will acquire 58.5m BMI Bank shares of BD1 each and issue 644m ASBB shares of 100 fils each," Al Salam Bank said in a filing to the DFM. Trading volumes remained relatively low compared to previous weeks as 326m shares valued at Dhs365m changed hands.