MIDEAST STOCKS-GFH Financial rises on stake sale; Dubai lacklustre

Shares in GFH Financial Group rose on Tuesday after the Islamic investment bank said it had agreed to sell a 10 percent stake in Bahraini cement producer Falcon Cement Co. GFH's Dubai-listed shares rose 2.3 percent. It has yet to trade in Bahrain. Other Dubai stocks made little headway. Rival developers Union Properties and Deyaar rose 1.2 and 1.6 percent respectively, but these are relative minnows compared with market bellwether Emaar Properties, which dropped 1.1 percent. Air Arabia fell 6.6 percent after the budget carrier went ex-dividend, helping drag Dubai's index 0.5 percent lower to 3,362 points. That trimmed the benchmark's gains since mid-January's two-year low to 28.2 percent.