Sep 15, 2008

UAE shares recoil in Merrill, Lehman aftermath

Dubai: UAE shares along with all leading Gulf stocks reported substantial losses on Monday as the financial turmoil pushed Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. into bankruptcy and Merrill Lynch & Co. to accept a takeover from Bank of America Corp.

The Dubai Financial Market General Index retreated for the fourth day, shedding 1.71 per cent to 4044.27 at close.

The Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange General Index lost 4.35 per cent ending at 3754.49. Qatar's Doha Securities Market Index declined for the fourth day, retreating 6.4 per cent.

Emaar fell 1.77 per cent to Dh7.21, the lowest since April 2005. Emirates NBD, the UAE’s biggest bank by assets, dropped 4.95 per cent to Dh9.21.

Qatar Industries, the largest publicly traded company in Doha, fell 9.1 per cent to 116 riyals, the lowest since September 2007.

Across the Gulf markets reacted to the banking crisis unfolding in the in US.

In Saudi Arabia the Tadawul fell 6.94 per cent as Qatar’s DSM index and Kuwait’s key indices fell 6.8 per cent and 4.25 per cent, respectively

Stocks in Europe and Asia tumbled, while US futures and the dollar slumped. News agencies reported that American International Group Inc. is seeking a $40 billion bridge loan from the Federal Reserve.

Stock indexes fell more than 3 per cent in France, Spain, Taiwan, the Philippines and India. Standard & Poor's 500 Index futures expiring in December retreated 2.9 per cent to 1,220.20.

Lehman, once the fourth-largest US investment bank, filed for bankruptcy after Barclays Plc and Bank of America abandoned talks to buy the crippled firm.

Bank of America agreed to acquire Merrill Lynch & Co., the world's biggest brokerage firm, for about $50 billion.

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