January 22, 2018 / 3:01 PM / 8 months ago

MIDEAST STOCKS-Region mixed, property firms pull down Dubai

* Dubai index fails test of technical resistance

* Concern about ample supply of homes

* Saudi’s Dar Al Arkan plunges in heavy trade

* But Al Yamamah Steel rises on renewable energy plan

* Nozha International Hospital loses steam in Egypt

By Andrew Torchia

DUBAI, Jan 22 (Reuters) - Middle East stock markets were mixed on Monday with property developers weighing on Dubai amid continued concern about ample new housing supply, while Qatar rose in anticipation of annual dividend announcements.

The Dubai index slipped 0.3 percent to 3,501 points as Emaar Properties dropped 0.4 percent, Deyaar lost 2.4 percent and Union Properties fell 0.7 percent.

In the last several days the index has tested but failed to break resistance around 3,540 points, where the market bottomed last October - a negative short-term technical signal.

Saudi Arabia’s index slipped 0.4 percent. Real estate developer Dar Al Arkan, which was the most heavily traded stock and has been extremely volatile in the last couple of months, tumbled 7.3 percent.

But Al Yamamah Steel climbed 1.9 percent in its heaviest trade since July. Its board proposed a second-half dividend of 0.50 riyal, down from 1.0 riyal in the first half, but also approved the start of two projects to produce equipment for solar and wind energy generation. Investment in the projects is to total 260 million riyals ($69 million).

Qatar’s index closed 0.7 percent higher after a surge in late trade. Qatar First Bank, the most heavily traded stock, gained 2.2 percent.

In Egypt, the blue-chip index fell 0.6 percent. Nozha International Hospital, which had soared in the last three days after Cleopatra Hospital sought regulatory approval to make a mandatory tender offer for all Nozha shares at 90 Egyptian pounds each, lost steam and last traded only 0.4 percent higher at 83.50 pounds.

Cleopatra rose 5.2 percent in its heaviest trade since last April.

SAUDI ARABIA

* Index dropped 0.4 percent to 7,481 points.

DUBAI

* Index fell 0.3 percent to 3,501 points.

ABU DHABI

* Index dropped 0.2 percent to 4,629 points.

QATAR

* Index rose 0.7 percent to 9,211 points.

EGYPT

* Index fell 0.6 percent to 15,243 points.

KUWAIT

* Index edged up 0.1 percent to 6,625 points.

BAHRAIN

* Index edged down 0.1 percent to 1,335 points.

OMAN

* Index rose 0.2 percent to 4,989 points. (Editing by Susan Fenton)

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