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Banks Healthy Quarterly Profits send Dubai Shares Soaring

Dubai, United Arab Emirates : 11 February 2010

Dubai stocks enjoyed a huge boost today, soaring to a three week high after the troubled sheikhdoms largest banks posted their fourth-quarter earnings. Emirates NBD and Dubai Islamic Bank climbed 4.7% and 5.2% respectively. The good news was also reflected in neighbour, Qatar, the shares of which gained the most in 2010.

Emirates NBD rose to AED 2.68 after posting an AED 178.8 million ($49 million) Q4 profit, compared to AED 15 million 12 months earlier.

U.A.E.’s biggest Islamic lender; Dubai Islamic Bank, grew to AED 2.44 with fourth-quarter profit increasing to AED 79.1 million from  AED 1.44 million compared to the same period last year, according to calculations by Bloomberg  based on full-year results.

A fund manager at Duet Mena Ltd, Rabih Sultani, predicted that the earnings signalled a return to a “healthier” outlook and that it was “an indication that the banking sector has reached a bottom.” Mr Sultani further clarified the context of the bottoming out of the banking sector was in terms of “provisioning and operating profit.”

Similarly, Emaar Properties PJSC, who built the world’s tallest skyscraper and who are also the U.A.E.’s biggest real-estate developer, added 3.2 % to AED 3.23, which was the most since Feb. 1. This was a based on a 4th quarter profits posting of AED 720 million ($196 million).

The buoyant figures boosted the DFM General Index by an additional 2.2%, which was the biggest increase since the 20th of January.

In other markets,  Sheikh Hamad Bin Jasim Bin Jaber Al- Thani , Qatar’s Prime Minister said the Qatari government’s budget for the 2010-11 fiscal year will be “much larger” than last year’s 94.5 billion riyals ($26 billion),in preparation for continued infrastructure projects. Consequently, the countries’ Securities Market Index grew 1.6 percent, the most since 14th December.

Paul Holdsworth, Staff Writer, Gulf Jobs Market News

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