* Abu Dhabi's Dana jumps on hopes for Kurdistan legal action
* But most Abu Dhabi blue chips sag
* Dubai's DAMAC rises ahead of MSCI index inclusion
* Saudi petchems slip as oil falls below $51
* MSCI index constituents support Egypt
By Celine Aswad
DUBAI, May 31 A sharp drop in property developer
Ezdan Holding rippled across Qatar's stock market on Wednesday
while profit-taking in blue chips dragged Abu Dhabi lower,
although Dana Gas jumped on hopes for payments from the
Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG).
Shares in Ezdan, Qatar's largest listed developer,
tumbled by a further 9.3 percent. They have plunged since the
end of last week, when shareholders gave preliminary approval
for the company to delist.
The exchange said it had removed Ezdan from the QSE index
after Monday's close because of the decision, but the steep drop
soured sentiment toward other stocks.
"Investors are fed up as a result of the inaction of the
regulatory authorities, the fact they did not reject the
delisting of such a major company," said one regional investor.
Qatar's stock index lost 1.6 percent.
Abu Dhabi's Dana Gas jumped 5.1 percent and was
the most heavily traded share on the bourse.
An article on the website of Pearl Petroleum said Pearl,
Dana and Crescent Petroleum had applied to a U.S. District Court
for recognition and enforcement of awards made at the London
Court of International Arbitration against the KRG.
The article said that documents associated with the U.S.
court filing revealed Pearl was seeking another $26.5 billion in
damages through a final phase of arbitration, which was expected
to begin in September.
In a statement, the KRG said it would "continue vigorously
to pursue its rights and defend its position". It has resisted
legal efforts to make it pay Pearl for years, and it is not
clear if the latest legal action will have a different result.
Profit-taking hit most Abu Dhabi blue chip shares, taking
the index down 1.7 percent. First Abu Dhabi Bank
retreated 3.7 percent, its biggest single-day decline since it
was formed by a merger on April 1.
The Dubai index was almost flat as 12 shares gained
ground and 19 declined. Small and mid-sized companies generally
outperformed again, with Islamic Arab Insurance
jumping 6.0 percent.
DAMAC Properties climbed 3.5 percent. It will be
included in the MSCI emerging market index on Thursday, so
passive index-linked funds were expected to flow into it on
In Saudi Arabia, large-cap banks outperformed with Banque
Saudi Fransi adding 2.6 percent. The Saudi index
Oil shipper National Shipping Co (Bahri) rose 0.3
percent on news it had signed a joint venture agreement with
state oil giant Aramco, London-listed Lamprell and South
Korea's Hyundai Heavy Industries to build and
operate a shipyard on the kingdom's east coast.
Petrochemical shares lagged as Brent oil futures
continued a sharp decline, falling below $51 a barrel to a
three-week low. Saudi Basic Industries lost 1.3
In Egypt, constituents of the MSCI emerging market index
buoyed the local blue chip index, which climbed 0.8
percent. Commercial International Bank advanced 3.9
percent and Global Telecom Holding rose 1.4 percent.
Real estate developer Talaat Mostafa Group rose
2.7 percent and investment bank EFG Hermes, which will
replace it in MSCI's emerging market index on Thursday, fell 1.9
percent. EFG had gained sharply and Talaat Mostafa had dropped
since the index change was announced in mid-May.
* The index was unchanged at 6,871 points.
* The index edged down 0.03 percent to 3,339
* The index lost 1.7 percent to 4,427 points.
* The index fell 1.6 percent to 9,901 points.
* The index rose 0.8 percent to 13,340 points.
* The index added 0.9 percent to 6,785 points.
* The index was flat at 1,320 points.
* The index rose 0.4 percent to 5,422 points.
(Editing by Andrew Torchia and Pritha Sarkar)