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Thu 19 May 2011 10:25 AM

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UAE, Kuwait falls; investors reduce risk

UAE bourses edge lower as investors booked profits ahead of weekend; property stocks weigh in Dubai

UAE, Kuwait falls; investors reduce risk
STOCK WATCH: Investors booked profit in Dubai property stocks, weighing the index (Getty Images)

UAE bourses edged lower as investors booked profits ahead of
the weekend and Dubai property stocks weigh.

Dubai's benchmark slips 0.4
percent to 1,583 points, down 3.1 percent so far in May.

"Pretty much the whole market is being driven by
external and macro level factors - there's a bit of uncertainty in global
markets in general," says Robert McKinnon, ASAS Capital chief investment
officer.

"People want to take risk off the table, going into the
weekend."

Emaar Properties fell 0.9 percent after saying it will write
off its investment in Dubai Bank.

The developer will take a hit of a 30 percent stake valued
at approximately AED172m ($46.8m) in the second-quarter.

"We're at the later stage of these write off, so the market
is looking past it," added McKinnon.

Neighbouring Abu Dhabi's index eased 0.2 percent to 2,655
points, halting two-day gains.

Dana Gas and Sorouh Real Estate slid 1.5 percent each.

Elsewhere, Kuwait's index KWSE slipped 0.2 percent to 6,476
points, declining for a fifth session in seven.

Heavyweight Zain fell 1.9 percent and Gulf Bank drops 1.8
percent.

Jazeera Airways tumbled 5.2 percent. The low-cost carrier
rose as much as 58.3 percent since posting its first-quarter earnings on May 3.

Jazeera reported a net profit of KD1.03m ($3.69m) for the
first-quarter, compared to a net loss of KD4.5m in the year-earlier period,
according to a statement on its website.

Institutional buying lifted Oman's bourse from the previous
day's 17-month low.

The benchmark ended 0.3 percent higher at 6,048 points,
snapping a nine-session losing streak.

"We have seen institutional buying interest at the
lower levels," said Kanaga Sundar, Gulf Baader Capital Markets head of
research. "Today's buying is seen as a bounce back, the market was
expecting it."

Bluechips Bank Muscat and Renaissance Services rose 0.6 and
0.8 percent respectively.

"Counters like Nawras , Bank Muscat, Renaissance look
attractive at the current levels. It's a better time to invest if you are
looking at medium to longer term," added Sundar.

Telecoms operator Nawras ended flat.

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