Mashreqbank leads Dubai index higher, Abu Dhabi falls

Electronic boards showing stock information are pictured at the stock market, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, November 5, 2020. REUTERS/Abdel Hadi Ramahi

Sept 30 (Reuters) - Dubai index closed higher on Friday, boosted by a 15% surge in lender Mashreqbank (<MASB.DU>), while Abu Dhabi stocks slipped on volatility in crude markets.

Middle East crude benchmarks were mixed on Friday, with Oman and Murban lower and Dubai edging higher on the last trading session of September.

In Dubai, the main share index (<.DFMGI>) rose 0.7%, driven by gains in heavyweight real estate and financial stocks as Blue-chip developer Emaar Properties (<EMAR.DU>) jumped 1.4% and Dubai developer's construction unit Emaar Development (<EMAARDEV.DU>) advanced 2.9%.

Mashreqbank shares have gained following a report on Wednesday that the lender has received bids from several companies to purchase stake in its payment unit.

Among other stocks, low-cost carrier Air Arabia (<AIRA.DU>) gained 1.5% after its unit announced a new direct flight to Moscow.

However, the index registered a monthly loss of 3%, its biggest drop in a month since June.

In Abu Dhabi, the index (<.FTFADGI>) retreated 0.7%, weighed down by a 2.6% drop in the United Arab Emirates' biggest lender, First Abu Dhabi Bank (<FAB.AD>), and a 1.6% fall in energy firm Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (TAQA) (<TAQA.AD>).

Health insurance provider Hayah Insurance (<HAYAH.AD>) declined nearly 10% after major shareholder Gulf Insurance Group sold its entire holding in the company.

Separately, Abu Dhabi-based Hospital operator Burjeel Holdings set a price range for its initial public offering (IPO) at 2 to 2.45 dirham ($0.5446 to $0.6671) a share, implying an equity value of $3.3 billion at the top end. read more

The company intends to sell around 550.7 million shares, or 11%, of issued share capital including 200 million new shares to be issued by Burjeel.

The Abu Dhabi index posted a monthly decline of 1.3%, according to Refinitiv data.

($1 = 3.6726 UAE dirham)

Reporting by Mohd Edrees in Bengaluru

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