Gulf stocks still down 4 years after crisis: Report

AFP, Sunday 30 Sep 2012

Major western bourses may have recovered from global crisis but Gulf markets continue to struggle

All seven stock markets in the energy-rich Gulf states failed to recover four years after the global financial crisis despite high oil prices, a Kuwaiti economic report said on Sunday.

Although major bourses in the West, where the crisis began, have recovered successfully with Dow Jones now 17.8 per cent higher than its level four years ago and Germany's DAX up 15.4 per cent, Gulf shares remain way behind their levels in August 2008, Al-Shall Economic Consultants said.
The stock market in Dubai, where the crisis hit the economy hard, remains the worst in the Gulf at 67 per cent below its level just before the crisis, followed by Bahrain's bourse which shed 60.2 per cent, Al-Shall said.
The Kuwait Stock Market, the third largest in the Gulf, remains 60 per cent adrift of its 31 August, 2008 close, while bourses in Muscat and Abu Dhabi are 41.1 per cent and 40.9 percent lower, respectively.
Saudi and Qatar bourses, the first and second largest Arab markets, were the best performers with Saudi Tadawul still down 18.2 per cent and Qatar Exchange down 18.0 per cent, Al-Shall said.
Al-Shall attributed the bad performance of Gulf stocks to inefficient state and corporate management which failed to capitalise on the massive rise of oil prices which greatly boosted state income in all Gulf states.
Despite listing many new companies, the market capitalisation of all the seven markets is still around $350 billion below its all-time high of $1.116 trillion recorded at the end of 2007 just before the crisis.
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