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Shuaa Rises to Highest in a Year as Arqaam Says Buy: Dubai Mover

May 23 (Bloomberg) -- Shuaa Capital PSC advanced to the highest in more than a year after the investment bank controlled by Dubai’s ruler was raised to buy at Arqaam Capital Ltd.

The shares climbed 3.4 percent to 0.76 dirham, the highest close since May 8, 2012. About 5.7 million shares traded, or almost four times the three-month daily average. Shuaa was the second-biggest mover after Commercial Bank of Dubai on the emirate’s benchmark DFM General Index in percentage terms. The measure lost 0.8 percent.

Shuaa, which reported a narrower first-quarter loss, said in October it plans to boost lending to small- and medium-sized businesses and high-net-worth individuals. The company completed a restructuring program to reduce non-core assets, cut jobs and generate recurring revenue. Shuaa has reported annual losses since 2008 as the global financial crisis led to a drop in volumes on local stock markets.

“We upgrade Shuaa to buy, after its successful expansion in SME lending,” Jaap Meijer, a director of equity research at Dubai-based Arqaam Capital, wrote in a report. He also cited the “reduction in losses from its investment banking platform” as a reason for raising the stock from hold. Arqaam increased its share-price estimate to 0.89 dirham.

The shares have jumped 38 percent this year, trailing Dubai’s benchmark’s 42 percent surge.

Arqaam also raised the price estimate of Commercial Bank of Dubai to 5.9 dirhams from 5.3 dirhams, according to the report dated May 22.

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

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Claudia Maedler at cmaedler@bloomberg.net

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