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ADX to develop ETF markets in 2009


Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange says its priority for 2009 is to develop markets for exchange traded funds, debt securities and derivatives.

Tom Healy, ADX chief executive, says the long-term objectives of diversification, improving transparency and of leading the development of the capital markets in the GCC region also remain in place.
‘In line with our five year strategy and the government’s Economic Vision: 2030, ADX will continue to focus on diversification and sustainable growth so we reach our goal of becoming the market of choice in this region,’ says Healy.  ‘Our priorities for 2009 are to develop markets for exchange traded funds, debt securities and derivatives as well continuing to enhance transparency and the regulatory environment for the benefit of all our stakeholders.’ 

According to Healy, the first six months of 2008 saw an unprecedented rise in the volume and value of trading on ADX, with volumes increasing by 93 per cent compared to the same period in 2007.

The total value of equities trading for the whole of 2008 showed an increase of 32 per cent compared to 2007, with AED232bn worth of shares changing hands compared to AED175bn the year before. However, overall volumes for 2008 dropped by four per cent compared to 2007.

Etisalat remained the largest company listed on ADX by market capitalisation, followed by National Bank of Abu Dhabi, QTel, First Gulf Bank and Arkan. 

The real estate sector accounted for most of the trading value, followed by banks and financial services and then energy. 

In terms of individual listed companies traded, ALDAR remained the highest in terms of trading value, with Arkan in second and Sorouh in third.

2008 also saw an increase in investors from 860,000 in 2007 to 877,000 in 2008. There was also  an increase in activity from institutional investors.

‘Increasing institutional participation is an important objective for ADX as it will stabilise the market in the longer-term,’ says Healy. 

The number of institutional investors increased 34 per cent from 1,623 in 2007 to 2,472 in 2008 and their trading value increased from 26 per cent to 32 per cent of total market trading value.

The proportion of shares owned by foreign investors declined in 2008, accounting for nine per cent compared to 13 per cent in 2007. 

Investors from the UK remained the largest after UAE Nationals, followed by investors from Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Luxembourg.

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