February 13, 2020 / 8:23 AM / 5 days ago

MIDEAST STOCKS-Most major Gulf markets dampened by disappointing earnings

Feb 13 (Reuters) - Most major Gulf markets were subdued on Thursday, digesting disappointing earnings at major companies.

The Dubai index slipped 0.2% with its largest listed developer Emaar Properties losing 1%, while its unit Emaar Malls was down 1.7%.

Emaar Properties posted a 1.7% fall in fourth-quarter profit to 1.76 billion dirhams on Wednesday, compared to 1.79 billion dirhams year ago.

Dubai is expected to see the biggest number of new homes completed in more than a decade this year, adding to pressure on a once-booming but now struggling property sector, a Knight Frank report said.

Rival DAMAC Properties, which reported its first annual loss since 2010 on Tuesday, opened down 0.8%.

However, Dubai Islamic Bank added 0.5% after it posted a rise in annual profit.

Saudi Arabia’s main share index traded flat with energy and financial stocks moving sideways. However, Rabigh Refining and Petrochemical Company shares dropped 8.6%, making them the biggest fallers on the index.

The stock saw its biggest fall in over six months after Rabigh swung to a net loss of 544 million riyals in 2019, from a profit of 669 million riyals in 2018.

Meanwhile, Al Rajhi Bank rose 0.6% and the kingdom’s largest lender National Commercial Bank was up 0.3%.

Qatar’s index dipped 0.3%. Industries Qatar dropped a further 1.5%, a day after it saw its biggest decline in six months as 2019 profits almost halved from a year earlier.

In Abu Dhabi, the index eased 0.3%. First Abu Dhabi Bank, the country’s largest lender, fell 0.3%, while Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank was down 0.4%, a day after it posted a marginal rise in fourth-quarter profit. (Reporting by Ateeq Shariff in Bengaluru; Editing by Alexander Smith)

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