Emaar, the Gulf’s largest listed property developer, lost almost 10% of its market value as investors reacted to the news that its US unit, John Laing Homes, is seeking Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

Emaar has taken impairment charges and write-downs for goodwill of about Dh4 billion (US$1.08bn) since it bought the US home builder for $1.05bn in June 2006. But dealers said it was still unclear whether some of the debts held by John Laing Homes could further weaken Emaar, whose share price has dropped by 85 per cent in the past 12 months.

The National