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ADCB Surges to Four-Year High on Share Buyback: Abu Dhabi Mover

Feb. 20 (Bloomberg) -- Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank PJSC, the third-biggest lender in the United Arab Emirates by assets, climbed to the highest level in more than four years amid a share-buyback program.

The shares gained 3.2 percent to 3.93 dirhams, the highest close since Sept. 2008. The bank bought back 391,907 shares today at 3.85 dirhams and 723,782 shares yesterday at 3.81 dirhams, according to regulatory filings.

ADCB was the third-biggest gainer on the benchmark ADX General Index, which rallied 1.6 percent today. The bank said last month it would pay a 25 percent cash dividend for 2012 compared with 20 percent the year earlier after fourth-quarter net income rose 19 percent, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

“The interest is as a result of starting the share-buyback program yesterday and today, giving investors comfort and support for current levels,” said Marwan Shurrab, vice-president at Dubai-based Gulfmena Investments Ltd.

The stock has surged 31 percent so far this year, outpacing the 14 percent gain of Abu Dhabi’s benchmark index. Five analysts recommend investors buy ADCB shares, five have a hold rating on the stock, while two say sell, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

The lender said Feb. 14 it would hold investor meetings in Europe and Asia for a possible dollar bond sale. It mandated Barclays Plc, ING Groep NV, JPMorgan Securities, National Bank of Abu Dhabi PJSC, Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc and itself as joint lead managers and book-runners.

ADCB’s 14-day relative strength index rose to 76 today. A reading above 70 indicates to some investors that the security is poised to drop.

To contact the reporter on this story: Sherine El Madany in Dubai at selmadany@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Alaa Shahine at asalha@bloomberg.net

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