• Dubai's main share index dropped 2.2pc, extending losses from the previous session, weighed down by a 5pc slide in the country's only listed airline Air Arabia.
  • The Dubai World Cup, one of the world's richest horse races, has been postponed until next year to safeguard the health of participants, the Dubai government said on Sunday.

Stock markets in the Middle East dropped on Monday as a rising number of lockdowns in the region and elsewhere worsened fears of a deep, coronavirus-driven global recession.

In Abu Dhabi, the index declined 3.1pc. Top lender First Abu Dhabi Bank fell 3.3pc, while Emirates Telecommunications was down 4.3pc.

The United Arab Emirates suspended all passenger and transit flights to and from the country for two weeks over coronavirus fears – state news agency WAM said on Sunday, citing National Emergency and Crisis and the Civil Aviation Authority.

Other countries have also imposed shutdowns to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, with nearly one in four Americans under orders to close up shop and stay at home on Saturday.

The UAE, the region's tourism and business hub, approved an additional 16 billion dirhams ($4.36 billion) on Sunday for a total stimulus package of 126 billion dirhams, according to a tweet from its vice president, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum, the ruler of Dubai.

Dubai's main share index dropped 2.2pc, extending losses from the previous session, weighed down by a 5pc slide in the country's only listed airline Air Arabia.

The Dubai World Cup, one of the world's richest horse races, has been postponed until next year to safeguard the health of participants, the Dubai government said on Sunday.

Saudi Arabia's benchmark index eased 1pc, with Al Rajhi Bank losing 1pc, while oil giant Saudi Aramco slipped 0.5pc.

Saudi Arabia imposed a nationwide curfew starting on Monday after reporting a jump of almost a quarter in coronavirus cases. On Sunday, Saudi Arabia recorded 119 new cases of the virus for a total of 511, the highest in the Gulf Arab region, the Health Ministry said.

The tally of cases in the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council now stands at more than 1,700. Bahrain reported a second death on Sunday, a citizen evacuated from Iran, taking the GCC's total to four.

Qatar's index lost 2.1pc, as most of its stocks were in red, including Qatar National Bank, which traded 2.4pc lower.

Qatar, whose 481 reported coronavirus cases are mostly among migrant workers, began erecting checkpoints to enforce a ban on public gatherings.