Emaar weighs as Dubai bourse makes largest drop in three weeks

Dubai's bourse makes its largest one-day loss in three weeks as its heaviest stock Emaar Properties drops on below-expected dividend announcement.

Shares in Emaar fall 2.8 percent to AED5.14, down from the previous session's 51-month high. The developer proposed a 2012 cash dividend of 10 fils, similar to that of 2011 and 2010. The stock had rallied in recent weeks partly on hopes of a higher dividend payout.

"From a technical point of view we have all the negative divergences we need to doubt the share will move on from here," says Nabil Al Rantisi, managing director at Menacorp in Abu Dhabi. "We have no reversal patterns yet but 5.35 is a major target. From a fundamental view we are more or less around the fair value of Emaar."

Emaar's performance triggered selling in other UAE stocks as well. National Central Cooling (Tabreed) loses 3.1 percent, builder Arabtec sheds 2.3 percent and Dubai Financial Market cuts 1.6 percent.

The emirate's index slipped 1 percent to finish at 1,925 points, its largest daily loss since February 3.

Heavyweights lead declines on Abu Dhabi's bourse, which also loses 1 percent to close at 3,005 points, easing away from Monday's 39-month closing high.

First Gulf Bank and Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank fall 1.5 and 2.5 percent respectively. Telecom operator Etisalat dips 1 percent.

In Qatar, the market records sharp losses for a fourth consecutive session as investors react to dividend news and payouts.

The index falls 0.9 percent to 8,572 points, to its lowest close since January 15.

Qatar Electricity and Water slumps 6.1 percent as the stock goes ex-dividend. Gulf International Services tumbles 8.7 percent. The company reported a 64-percent rise in 2012 profit and a dividend of QAR1.5 per share.

"The results were very good but investors don't like the dividend - they all want more," says a Doha-based broker who asked not to be identified.

Doha Bank loses 4.2 percent, extending declines for a third day after going ex-dividend.

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