June 29, 2017 / 8:29 AM / 7 months ago

MIDEAST STOCKS-Banking shares buck global uptrend in UAE but Emaar helps Dubai

DUBAI, June 29 (Reuters) - Banking shares in the United Arab Emirates were generally weak in early trade on Thursday despite a strong performance by their global counterparts, but Emaar Properties helped Dubai’s bourse rise slightly.

The prospect of higher interest rates from central banks around the world, including Britain and Canada, bolstered banking stocks overnight and helped the S&P 500 score its biggest one-day percentage gain in about two months on Wednesday. Banks were also strong in Asia on Thursday.

But in Abu Dhabi, the only lender to rise was Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank, up 0.3 percent. Union National Bank was the worst performer , retreating 3.6 percent. The Abu Dhabi index was down 0.1 percent.

In Dubai, investment firm Shuaa Capital was the top performer, up 2.7 percent, while the largest listed real estate developer, Emaar Properties, gained 0.4 percent. The index was up 0.3 percent as 13 other shares rose and only six declined.

Kuwait’s index edged up 0.3 percent in very thin trade as Warba Bank rose 0.4 percent and the largest listed public warehousing company in the Gulf, Agility , nudged up 0.1 percent.

Markets in Riyadh and Doha are closed for an Eid al-Fitr break and will resume trade on July 2. Egypt is also closed for a public holiday. (Reporting by Celine Aswad,; Editing by Andrew Torchia and Ed Osmond)

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