UAE markets ended the week stable on crude prices

Shares in the UAE ended the week on a positive note on Thursday as oil prices stabilised, even as other Arabian Gulf bourses finished lower.

Crude oil futures were steady after shedding more than US$3 over the previous four days, as hopes faded for the agreement of new production caps at this month’s informal Opec talks.

“The debate about production caps that is currently under way is nothing but hot air – as can be seen from the fact that Opec producers are doing anything but reducing output,” said Commerzbank’s commodity research team in a note on Thursday, noting that Opec production climbed to a record 33.5 million barrels per day last month.

Such a recovery had little impact on equities in the Arabian Gulf, with the UAE stocks the exception. In Saudi Arabia, the Tadawul finished per cent lower, while the Qatar Exchange finished down 1.3 per cent.

The Dubai Financial Market General Index ended the day up 0.2 per cent at 3,511.77, thanks to gains by Arabtec Holding and Dubai Parks and Resorts.

In the capital, the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange General Index ended a quiet day up 0.2 per cent at 4,480.65. Aldar Properties and NBAD were among the big-name gainers, rising 0.7 per cent and 0.8 per cent respectively. Etisalat, meanwhile closed 0.2 per cent lower.

Meanwhile, Nasdaq Dubai announced the launch of equity futures trading, the first platform kind of its kind in the UAE. A total of 1,636 futures contracts traded in 163,600 shares, in companies including Aldar, Arabtec, DP World, Dubai Islamic Bank, Dubai Parks and Resorts, and Emaar Properties.

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John Everington

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