Emaar shares may fall after dividend disappointment

Shares in Emaar Properties are likely to open lower after the developer announced 2012 dividends that came in below expectations.

Emaar's board proposed a dividend of 10 fils per share, maintaining the payout at the same level it has been for the past two years. The developer, Dubai's largest listed firm by market value, closed at a 51-month high on Monday after rallying in recent sessions on expectations the payout would be higher.

Analysts say, at 10 fils per share, the dividend yield on Emaar is around 1.9 percent, making it among the lowest for UAE companies. This is likely to make the stock unattractive for investors chasing dividends.

In Egypt, the government will reopen talks with the International Monetary Fund next month on a US$4.8bn loan. The government laid out plans to reverse a slide in currency reserves and tackle the dire state of public finances, also essential for securing a lifeline from the IMF.

In Qatar, Gulf International Services will be in focus after reporting a 64 percent rise in 2012 profit. The firm added it would pay a cash dividend of QAR1.5 per share.

Global sentiment is weak with euro zone debt worries back on the forefront. Asian shares took their lead from overnight plunges in global equities to fall on Tuesday as an apparently inconclusive election outcome in Italy raises fears of paralysing any new government and potentially reignite the euro-zone debt crisis.

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