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Mon 14 Feb 2011 11:17 AM

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Abu Dhabi shares fall, snap 10-day rally, as Sorouh reports loss

Sorouh, Abu Dhabi’s second-biggest property developer by market value, dropped to the lowest level on record

Abu Dhabi shares fall, snap 10-day rally, as Sorouh reports loss
(Getty Images)

Abu Dhabi shares fell, snapping a 10-day rally, after Sorouh
Real Estate Co reported a loss.

Sorouh, Abu Dhabi’s second-biggest property developer by
market value, dropped to the lowest level on record. National Bank of Abu
Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates’ second-biggest bank by assets, retreated 1.3
percent. The ADX General Index declined 0.6 percent, the first drop since Jan.
30, to 2,711.16 at the 2 p.m. close in Abu Dhabi. They had gained 6.5 percent
over the previous 10 days. The Bloomberg GCC 200 Index slipped 0.5 percent at
3:29 p.m. in Riyadh.

Sorouh shares slumped 3.7 percent to 1.32 dirhams, the
lowest since the company’s initial public offering in December 2005. The loss
attributable to shareholders was 212 million dirhams ($58 million), after a
profit of 22 million dirhams a year earlier, Chief Financial Officer Richard
Amos said on a conference call on Monday. The median estimate of four analysts
was for a profit of 52.5 million dirhams, according to data compiled by
Bloomberg.

The drop “was on the back of Sorouh earnings,” said Haissam
Arabi, chief executive officer of Gulfmena Alternative Investments in Dubai.
“Regional markets lagged because of a fear of increased political risk in the
region.”

Property values in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the U.A.E. and
the largest of its seven sheikhdoms, tumbled 45 percent since the mid-2008
peak, Jones Lang LaSalle Inc. estimates.

National Bank of Abu Dhabi dropped the most since Jan. 30,
to 11.7 dirhams.

Bahrain on Monday deployed anti-riot police as opposition
leaders, inspired by uprisings in Egypt and Tunisia, called for a day of
protests to demand greater political freedom and more jobs. Residents of the
Shiite Muslim village of Nuweidrat said clashes broke out between activists and
police after morning prayers. Police were present on the outskirts of the area,
where Shiite flags adorned buildings along alleyways. Bahrain’s BB All Share
Index rose 0.1 percent.

The Arab world has been shaken over the past two months by
anti-government demonstrations that drove Tunisian President Zine el Abidine
Ben Ali from office on Jan. 14 and forced Egypt’s Hosni Mubarak to resign and
cede his presidential powers to the country’s armed forces on Feb. 11.
Political unrest has also spread to Jordan, where King Abdullah sacked his
prime minister earlier this month, as well as other countries including Yemen
and Algeria.

Qatar’s QE Index dropped 0.9 percent and Kuwait’s SE Price
Index decreased 0.8 percent. Saudi Arabia’s measure slipped less than 0.1
percent. The DFM General Index increased 0.2 percent and Oman’s MSM30 Index
advanced 0.7 percent.

 

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