Gulf stocks rise as attention turns to business results


Gulf stock exchanges rose on Monday to continue their rise for the third day in a row, supported by the easing of US-Iranian tensions and ahead of the announcement of corporate results.

Stock exchanges in the Gulf region fell sharply on January 8 after Iran’s response to a US strike that killed an Iranian military commander.

The Saudi Stock Exchange index rose 0.8 percent, as the shares of Arab National Bank jumped 4.9 percent, and the shares of Banque Saudi Fransi gained 2.7 percent.

But Saudi oil giant Aramco fell 0.1 to 34.8 riyals ($ 9.28). Aramco shares fluctuated in light of US-Iranian tensions and fell to 34 riyals on January 8, the lowest level since it began trading on December 11.

“The profits of companies in the Gulf Cooperation Council countries are expected to increase by 6.5 percent this year, and profits in Saudi Arabia will increase by 7.1 percent,” said Tariq Fadlallah of Nomura Asset Management Middle East, citing a note by Marmore Research.

In Qatar, the main index ended trading 0.6 percent higher with the share of the largest Gulf bank, Qatar National Bank, 1.4 percent before announcing its results on Tuesday.

Qatar Insurance gained 1.7 percent after Salem Khalaf Al Mannai was appointed CEO.

The Dubai index rose 0.8 percent, with Emirates NBD and Dubai Islamic Bank adding 1.9 percent and 1.1 percent, respectively.

The Abu Dhabi index rose 0.6 percent, with the share of First Abu Dhabi Bank rising 0.7 percent, while Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank rose 1.3 percent.

But the leading stocks index in Egypt fell 0.8 percent after gains for three consecutive sessions, as Commercial International Bank, the market heavyweight, fell 1.2 percent.

Siham Pioneers Holdings retreated 7.3 percent, in its biggest loss since September 22, and the financial services provider said its board had approved a stock swap lab set by a financial advisor to increase the stake in five subsidiaries to 90 percent.

Egyptian Stock Exchange data showed that foreign investors’ sales exceeded their purchases.

The Kuwaiti and Oman stock exchanges are closed on Monday to mourn the death of Sultan Qaboos bin Saeed, and it is scheduled to resume trading on Tuesday and Wednesday, respectively.

Below are the levels of Arab stock market indexes closing on Monday:


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