DUBAI, May 1 (Reuters) - Gulf stock markets moved narrowly in early, quiet trade on Monday although Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB) rose after better-than-expected earnings for the first quarter.
The Abu Dhabi stock index edged up 0.01 percent as ADCB added 1.5 percent; it posted an 8 percent rise in first-quarter profit to 1.11 billion dirhams ($302.2 million), while analysts polled by Reuters had on average forecast 995.4 million dirhams.
Dubai’s index fell 0.3 percent as courier Aramex lost 1.1 percent after reporting a 5 percent fall in quarterly profit due to a rise in provisions related to its incentive scheme. Profit was 91.8 million dirhams; EFG Hermes and SICO Bahrain had forecast 109.1 million dirhams and 105.6 million dirhams.
Union Properties slipped 1.0 percent amid a tussle over the membership of its board. The company announced on Sunday that chairman Khalid Jassim bin Kalban and other directors had been replaced after stepping down, in the wake of a shareholder vote to ban board members from holding positions at competitors; Kalban is managing director at Dubai Investments .
However, Union Properties then released a brief statement quoting the securities regulator as saying bin Kalban and the other directors denied they had resigned. The company did not explain the contradiction with its earlier statements.
Shares in Dubai Investments, which has a joint venture with Union Properties, were down 1.4 percent.
Qatar’s index edged up 0.1 percent as real estate firm Ezdan Holding jumped 3.5 percent after reporting a 62 percent surge in first-quarter net profit.
Petrochemical producer Industries Qatar dropped 2.1 percent.
But in Saudi Arabia, the index climbed 0.3 percent after 55 minutes of trade on the back of top petrochemical producer Saudi Basic Industries, which gained 0.8 percent. The company is expected to release quarterly earnings after the close and the earnings of several smaller Saudi petrochemical firms that have already reported were strong.
Saudi Industrial Development, another producer, rose 2.5 percent after saying it had swung to a small net profit for the latest quarter from a year-earlier loss. (Reporting by Andrew Torchia; Additional reporting by Alexander Cornwell; Editing by Andrew Heavens)