By Farah Halime

Dubai’s stock market hit a new low as concerns grew over social unrest and its impact on stronger oil-rich economies in the region.

The Dubai Financial Market (DFM) slipped 3.5 per cent to 1,374.43 points and heavyweight stocks fell to new lows.

Emaar Properties, the Dubai developer of the world’s tallest tower, the Burj Khalifa, ended 6 per cent to Dh2.50, after its shares fell to 1-year low during intraday trading.

Arabtec, which was the most actively traded stock with more than 44 million shares changing hands, closed at its lowest point since March 2009. Its shares fell 8.9 per cent to Dh1.22.

The Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange was also down 1.8 per cent to 2,527.40 points, as

“We’re relying on the market completely. We’ve only got day traders and they don’t know which way to go,” said Mohammed Ali Yasin, the chief investment officer at CAPM Investments.

He added that Egypt remains on people’s mindsets and the implications of protests in Bahrain and Oman is making investors “very tense and edgy”.

Saudi Arabia’s Tadawul, the Arab world’s largest stock market, was the main focus for investors, as it fell 3.8 per cent to 5,323.27 points. The Middle East’s biggest oil producer has suffered from a volatile market as concerns that unrest will spread to the Kingdom.

Elsewhere in the region, Qatar’s measure slumped to a 5-month low retreating 3.6 per cent to 7,657.47 points, and Kuwait was at it’s lowest point since 2004. The measure closed 2.6 per cent down to 6,157.70 points. Muscat’s index retreated 1.5 per cent to 6,303.82 points. The Egyptian stock exchange is slated to re-open on Sunday, after more than a month of closure.