Saudi Stock Exchange Extends Gains; Qatar plummets on profit taking – Markets

The Saudi stock market rose on Sunday in response to rising crude oil prices late last week, while the Qatari index extended losses on profit taking.

Saudi Arabia’s benchmark index gained 0.5%, up for a ninth session in ten, led by a 3.6% jump in Islamic lender Al Rajhi Bank.

Brent crude oil futures settled at $2.92, or 2.68%, at $111.70 a barrel on Thursday ahead of a long weekend following news that the European Union may phase out a ban. Russian oil imports.

In addition, ratings agency Fitch on Thursday revised its outlook on Saudi Arabia from “positive” to “stable”, citing improvements in the country’s sovereign balance sheet given rising oil revenues.

The kingdom plans to post its first budget surplus in nearly a decade this year by keeping tight control over spending as revenues rise, boosted by rising crude prices, said Finance Minister Mohammed al- Jadaan in December.

In Qatar, the index fell 0.9%, extending losses from the previous session after a record high last week triggered profit taking.

Qatar Islamic Bank fell 2.5%, while Qatar National Bank ended down 2.1%.

Dubai Stock Exchange Posts Fourth Weekly Gain; Abu Dhabi finishes flat

Outside the Gulf, Egypt’s blue chip index edged up 0.3%, helped by a 1.9% rise in major lender Commercial International Bank following an increase in first-quarter profits.

Elsewhere, EFG Hermes rebounded 1.6%.

The Egyptian investment bank plunged about a fifth in the previous session, its biggest drop in about 16 years, after First Abu Dhabi Bank (FAAB) withdrew its bid for a majority stake.

FAB, the UAE’s largest lender, cited global market uncertainty and volatile macro conditions for the pullout.

Abu Qir Fertilizers and Chemical Industries fell more than 2% after the company revised its annual dividend to one Egyptian pound ($0.0544) from 2 previously.

SAUDI ARABIA rose 0.5% to 13,682

QATAR fell 0.9% to 13,995

EGYPT up 0.3% to 10,708

BAHRAIN was stable at 2,102

OMAN increased by 0.5% to 4,258

KUWAIT fell 0.1% to 9,168

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