GCC equity markets registered the most harmful year in 2008
The GCC stock markets registered another downward trend during the last month of 2008. According to Dr. Gil Feiler, regional economic expert, the Qatari stock exchange was the only market to perform positively during December with a growth of 13.5 percent. The bourse of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia registered a very low decline of less than 1 percent, while the other bourse in the GCC continued there negative trend. Dubai Stock Exchange declined by 16.8 percent with sharper decline in the real estate companies. The same trend was the case in the bourses of Abu Dhabi, Oman and Kuwait with decline in the range of 11.5-13.8 percent. The investors in the GCC bourses should recover from the disastrous annual results: According to Dr. Feiler, all the GCC markets ended in red. Dubai led the downtrend with negative 72.3 percent, Saudi with minus 57.3 percent, Abu Dhabi with negative 48.1 percent, while Oman, Kuwait and Bahrain registered milder downtrend of between 39-51 percent. Qatar registered the best results with minus 29 percent during 2008. Feiler noted that the total value of the GCC stock market is $540 billion with an average P/E of 7.1. SABIC has the largest market cap with $44 billion.