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Dubai’s stock market DFM hits an eight-year high, lifted by a real estate boom

Dubai’s stock market DFM hits an eight-year high, lifted by a real estate boom

Buoyed by a surge in real estate activity, the Dubai Financial Market has reached its highest point in nearly eight years and extended year-to-date gains to nearly 25percent.

The city-state’s bourse peaked at 4,022 on Tuesday before pulling back to 3,986 on Thursday. It's trading at the highest levels since August 2015. This year the Dubai Financial Market has outperformed the S&P 500, which is up nearly 20 percent, and the MSCI All Country World Index, a benchmark for global equities, which is up 16 percent.

Dubai, a global business hub home to 3.5 million people, weathered the pandemic while keeping its vital tourism industry afloat.

Shares of Emaar Properties and Emaar Development led the recent gains following a four-day break for the holiday of Eid al-Adha at the end of last month. The state-backed developers are behind dozens of high-rise buildings, including the world’s tallest skyscraper, the Burj Khalifa.

The real estate sector makes up more than a third of Dubai's consumer price index and some 10 percent of its gross domestic product. After a pandemic slump, Dubai saw nearly 87,000 residential sales in 2022, beating a previous record of nearly 81,000 in 2009. This year could see even more.

Oil has also helped fuel economic growth, though nearly all of the United Arab Emirates’ petroleum comes from Abu Dhabi, another of the seven emirates that make up the federation.

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