Gulf companies posted losses of more than Dh12.85 billion ($3.5 billion) in the last quarter of 2009, according to a research report by a UAE newspaper.
The report by The National showed that finance and property companies were the worst-affected and have weighed heavily on regional markets over recent weeks.
Among banks, Gulf Finance House, the Bahrain-based Islamic investment bank, topped the list of losers in the region, with losses of $607.2 million, after which came the Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank (ADCB) with a loss of $325.7 million.
Among property developers, Aldar Properties, the region’s second-largest developer by assets, had a Q4 loss of $153.2 million, followed by Union Properties, which reported a full-year loss of $135.5 million.
&Analysts said further declines in the region’s property market could adversely impact the balance sheets of banks and property developers.
“This year could be even more challenging than last year for companies,” said Saud Masud, the Dubai-based regional head of research at UBS bank was quoted as saying in the report. “There’re too many players, too much risk and too few opportunities available.”