Regional markets take a breather after a strong December start


GCC: After a stellar start to the month and a strong first week of trading, regional markets were expected to kick on. Instead the momentum stalled as profit taking and greater caution prevailed. Only Kuwait and Qatar could generate any meaningful gains going up 1.4% and 1.7% respectively.

UAE, Saudi and Egypt were all around the breakeven mark. The one week breather may provide the markets another chance to refuel and go into the new year on a strong positive foot as average monthly gains are still at a healthy +2.7%. However, as is usually the case at this time of the year, volumes and liquidity may drop.

Western institutions will certainly take the food off the gas meaning regional players will be the ones looking to dictate the market trend for the last 2 weeks of 2016. Abu Dhabi (+4%) and Saudi (+3%) will look to preserve their annual gains and add to them if possible; Qatar will certainly try and flip its annual losses of -2% into something more green while Dubai (+13%) and Egypt (+62%) may be happy to close up shop.

In the case of Egypt its annual gains come at the price of the severe currency devaluation so in dollar terms it’s still negative on the year meaning ample opportunity still exists for value buyers.

Indexes Last WTD (%) MTD (%) YTD (%)
Dubai (DFMGI) 3,554.46 -0.12% 5.76% 12.80%
Abu Dhabi (ADSMI) 4,462.99 -1.20% 3.58% 3.62%
Saudi (SASEIDX) 7,090.91 -0.38% 1.30% 2.59%
Kuwait (KWSE) 5,668.49 1.42% 2.05% 0.95%
Egypt (EGX30) 11,326.03 0.25% -1.11% 61.66%
Qatar (DSM) 10,224.13 1.69% 4.39% -1.97%
Bahrain (BHSEIDX) 1,188.70 -0.27% 1.24% -2.24%
Oman (MSM30) 5,728.65 1.08% 4.39% 5.96%
TR GCC (Reuters) 199.77 0.29% 4.36% 2.74%
DJ MENA 511.60 0.11% 2.50% 2.74%

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With operations in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Singapore, Al Masah advises qualifying investors on growth opportunities in 13 focus markets in MENA and South East Asia.