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Top lender lifts Abu Dhabi stocks, most Gulf rises
Published in Amwal Al Ghad on 22 - 04 - 2019

Abu Dhabi's stock market rose for a fourth consecutive session on Monday, helped by heavyweight lender First Abu Dhabi Bank, while the Saudi market was pressured by losses for its petrochemical stocks, especially Saudi Kayan.
The Abu Dhabi index rose 0.3 percent, with First Abu Dhabi Bank gaining 0.7 percent.
The lender has been rising in the last few sessions after it obtained regulatory approval to increase its foreign ownership limit to 40 percent from 25 percent.
Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB) increased 1.5 percent and Union National Bank was up 1.9 percent.
On Sunday ADCB's chief executive Alaa Eraiqat was appointed chairman of Al Hilal Bank. ADCB is expected to merge with Al Hilal Bank and Union National Bank in the first half of 2019.
Saudi Arabia's main index slipped 0.4 percent, partly led by a 5.7 percent decline in Saudi Kayan Petrochemical after it swung to a first-quarter loss from a profit last year.
"Lower selling prices and lower margins together with higher finance costs in Q1 19, resulted in another quarter of net loss," Arqaam Capital said, maintaining its ‘sell' rating on the stock.
Qatar's blue-chip index edged up 0.2 percent, with Gulf International Services increasing 3.5 percent after its unit Gulf Drilling International signed a 3-year contract with oil field developer North Oil.
Dubai's main index added 0.2 percent with Dubai Islamic Bank, the country's largest sharia-compliant lender, rose 0.6 percent ahead of its board meeting on Tuesday to approve first quarter results.
Dubai's economy is expected to grow by 2.1 percent in 2019, according to the government's forecast, up from 1.94 percent in 2018, which was its slowest pace since a 2009 contraction. ($1 = 3.6400 Qatar riyals) ($1 = 3.7500 riyals) (Reporting by Ateeq Shariff in Bengaluru Editing by Gareth Jones)


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