The region's stock markets are likely to see lower trading volumes in the week ahead with disappointing US jobs data and concerns over sovereign debt crisis spreading in Europe, say experts.
"The region's markets will be moving sideways in the week ahead, trading in a range. The Abu Dhabi market may perform better than Dubai, led by the banking sector.
"The markets in Saudi Arabia and Qatar will also be trading sideways as nothing significant is expected to happen," Musa Haddad, head trader with National Bank of Abu Dhabi Asset Management, told Gulf News. "The markets are now awaiting second quarter company results which may see some of the stocks making some upside moves. However, the markets over the medium-term are still going to be trading sideways," he added.
Article continues below
Haddad said for the Dubai market 1,620 will be the first positive signal to make upside moves, while for Abu Dhabi, the level of 2,780 will be the trigger for more upward movements. For crude oil, any drop below $90 a barrel could trigger more downside moves, he added.
"Although we believe there is scope for a recovery of markets, we have not lost sight of the pending problems. While the Greeks may have resolved their problems in the near term, the markets will remain sceptical about the medium term," wrote Gary Dugan, chief investment officer at Emirates NBD, in a research note.
"The Greeks have done enough to satisfy the IMF [International Monetary Fund] with their promises of what they intend to achieve, however good intentions will be insufficient over the medium term.
"Delivery on raising funds through privatisation, tax increases and spending cuts still look very ambitious. There is a clear risk that the markets will quickly come to the conclusion that the plans are unachievable, raising the risk of a default. In the US the Democrats and Republicans are continuing to fight over the necessary budget measures to bring the deficit under some control. "It is still very likely that a compromise will be agreed; however the ongoing debate has only served to highlight the scale of the debt problems facing the US government," Dugan added.
US stocks rose last week, giving the Standard & Poor's 500 Index its biggest rally in 21 months, as gains in technology and commodity companies were enough to overcome Friday's drop following the worst monthly jobs report since September.