Stocks in Dubai and Doha fell after the UAE and Qatar failed to secure an upgrade to the MSCI Emerging Markets Index, but Abu Dhabi’s market heavyweights bucked the downward trend across the Middle East to lead the ADX higher.
The UAE and Qatar missed out on reclassification to “emerging markets” status for the fourth consecutive year since 2009.
Following the announcement yesterday morning, the Dubai Financial Market General Index fell 0.4 per cent to 1,470.45 points, while Qatar’s QE Index slid 0.6 per cent to 8,253.46.
However, the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange (ADX) General Index rose 0.7 per cent to 2,508.59, the only Middle Eastern market making gains yesterday. Stocks including Etisalat, Aldar Properties and Abu Dhabi National Energy Company led the market higher.
In Dubai, Emaar Properties, Aramex and Dubai Financial Market Company were among the biggest losers.
But MSCI’s decision should do little to dampen market activity in the weeks ahead and the door was still open to an upgrade in future years, said Georges Elhedery, the regional head of global markets at HSBC.
“It’s important that we should not see failure to be upgraded on this occasion as fatal,” he said. “This is not a binary decision, inclusion gets regularly reviewed and substantial progress is being made by both markets.”
The MSCI Emerging Markets Index tracks about US$3.2 trillion in global equities in economic powerhouses including China and Brazil, and inclusion is expected to bring billions of dollars of investment from institutional investors.
Morocco’s Masi index fell 1 per cent to 8,209.36 yesterday, after MSCI signalled it could downgrade the country from emerging to frontier market status because of low liquidity levels.