* Some investors betting Emaar, Arabtec will hike dividend
* Foreigners buy into Dubai's Deyaar as ban lifted
* Abu Dhabi's Aldar gains after announcing $1.4 bln in
* Qatar's Islamic stocks rise on expected Ezdan buying
* Saudi's Alhokair jumps after Q1 earnings, bonus issue
By Olzhas Auyezov
DUBAI, April 21 Dubai's bourse posted its
highest daily gain since late January on Monday as investors
scooped up shares of real estate and construction companies on
hopes for increased dividend payouts.
The Dubai benchmark rose 2.9 percent to 4,984
points, its highest level since August 2008, while turnover more
than doubled compared to the previous session.
Real estate developer Emaar Properties, whose
shares rose 3.9 percent, and construction firm Arabtec
, up 9.5 percent, contributed the most to the increase.
Both companies will hold annual shareholder meetings this
month to discuss, among other issues, dividend payouts for 2013.
Some investors are betting that the companies will end up paying
more than initially suggested by their boards, said Sanyalak
Manibhandu, manager of research at NBAD Securities.
"There are rumours that there will be different profit
distribution," he said.
Emaar's shareholders will meet on Wednesday; its board has
proposed paying a 15 percent cash dividend and issuing 10
percent bonus shares. Arabtec's shareholders will discuss a
proposed 10 percent cash dividend and a 30 percent bonus share
issue on April 30. Neither of the companies has officially
announced any plans to review the proposed dividends.
The third biggest contributor to Dubai's jump was property
developer Deyaar, whose shares rose 6.1 percent as
they became open to investment by foreigners from outside the
Gulf. According to bourse data, non-Gulf investors owned 0.4
percent of Deyaar's stock after the close on Monday; United Arab
Emirates investors reduced their holdings to 94.4 percent from
95.1 percent at the same time.
Monday's surge brought Dubai close to the psychologically
important mark of 5,000 points and increased year-to-date gains
to 48 percent.
"I think we are still at the end, or at a fairly mature
stage, of the rally which has been going on since the start of
2013," said Manibhandu from NBAD Securities.
"The culmination of the rally will be the upgrade of Dubai
to emerging market status" by index compiler MSCI at the end of
May, he added.
Analysts say the upgrade, which will also include Abu Dhabi
and Qatar, may trigger profit-taking as many active funds have
already taken positions in local stocks and the volume of
inflows from passive funds - which are expected to buy on the
eve of the upgrade - may be lower than hoped.
"It is hot and there is nothing to fuel the heat apart from
high hopes, some of which are about to be dashed," Manibhandu
Abu Dhabi's index rose 1.0 percent to a fresh
eight-year high of 5,192 points on the back of stocks that look
likely to be included in the MSCI emerging markets index.
Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank rose 2.5 percent,
National Bank of Abu Dhabi added 1.0 percent and First
Gulf Bank climbed 0.9 percent.
Real estate developer Aldar Properties, also a
likely MSCI index pick, added 4.5 percent after it announced
three new projects worth a total of $1.4 billion on Monday and
said it was looking at 20 more.
"Any bit of news is incrementally positive to the sentiment
(towards UAE property stocks)," said Amer Khan, senior executive
officer at Shuaa Asset Management.
"These are all names that attract significant retail
interest which would be naturally driven by project
Qatar's bourse also posted strong gains as its main index
rose above resistance on its 2008 peak of 12,637 points
and climbed 1.5 percent to 12,768 points, a level last seen in
Stocks in sharia-compliant companies continued to lead
gains: the bourse's Al Rayan Islamic Index, which tracks
them, rose 2.7 percent.
Sharia-compliant stocks started gaining earlier this month
on expectations of large investments from Ezdan Holding Group
, a firm established and chaired by members of Qatar's
ruling al-Thani family.
In March Ezdan, whose shares jumped 9.9 percent on Monday
and have more than doubled in price this month, bought a stake
of more than 20 percent in Islamic investment firm Islamic
Holding Group. Investors expect it to make more
In Saudi Arabia, the main index retreated 0.2
percent from a six-year high reached on Sunday.
Shares in Saudi Electricity Co fell 1.5 percent
after it reported a wider-than-expected net loss for the first
quarter. It lost 913 million riyals ($243.4 million) during the
quarter, compared to a loss of 657 million riyals in the same
period of the previous year. NCB Capital had forecast SEC would
have a quarterly net loss of 754 million riyals.
Shares in retailer Fawaz Abdulaziz Alhokair Co
jumped 7.0 percent after it reported a 40 percent year-on-year
increase in net profit for its fourth quarter to March 31.
The stock hit a new all-time high of 197.0 riyals, although
at 190.8 million riyals, the profit missed the average forecast
of three analysts polled by Reuters who had expected 230 million
The company also said it planned to pay a dividend of 3
riyals per share for the second half of its last financial year,
and that its board had recommended doubling the company's
capital to 2.1 billion riyals through a one-for-one bonus issue
* The index rose 2.9 percent to 4,984 points.
* The index climbed 1.0 percent to 5,192 points.
* The index added 1.5 percent to 12,768 points.
* The index edged down 0.2 percent to 9,618 points.
* The index rose 0.7 percent to 7,484 points.
* The index climbed 0.5 percent to 1,392 points.
* The index slipped 0.09 percent to 6,835 points.
(Editing by Andrew Torchia)