UAE markets mixed; Aldar, Sorouh slip

Abu Dhabi's market edges lower in early trade, slipping off multi-month highs as investors book gains
By Reuters
Wed 09 Jan 2013 11:47 AM

Abu Dhabi's market edges lower in early trade, slipping off multi-month highs as investors book gains, while Dubai's bourse extends gains.

Abu Dhabi's Aldar Properties and Sorouh Real Estate each shed 2.5 percent. The two developers surged on Tuesday after sources told Reuters the firms reached an initial merger agreement.

Aldar on Wednesday said its merger talks with Sorouh are at an advanced stage.

Abu Dhabi's measure slips 0.3 percent to 2,715 points, down from an 18-month high.

Dubai's index gains 0.3 percent to 1,733 points, a fresh 10-month high.

Emaar Properties climbs 1.2 percent as investors bet on rising housing prices despite concerns of a new limit on mortgage lending.

Commercial banks in the United Arab Emirates plan to ask the central bank to delay and soften new rules placing caps on mortgage loans for residential housing, banking industry sources said on Sunday.

A central bank circular last week said mortgage loans for foreign individuals should not exceed 50 percent of the property value for a first purchase of a home, and 40 percent for second and subsequent homes. The caps for UAE citizens were set at 70 percent and 60 percent.

Carrier Air Arabia slips 0.6 percent, while contractor Arabtec extends gains after winning a US$653m Louvre project on Tuesday. Its share are up 1.2 percent.

Elsewhere, Oman's benchmark rises 0.5 percent to 5,806 points, while Kuwait and Qatar trade near-flat.

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