• Gulf stocks rise, SABIC lifts TASI


    Gulf stocks surge, SABIC lifts TASI
    Industries Qatar (IQ) hit a 24-week high on Sunday, tracking gains in regional rival Saudi Basic Industries Corp. (SABIC), while solid quarterly earnings also supported Doha-listed stocks.
    Middle East markets rose, bolstered by gains in oil prices, although volumes were subdued, with Kuwait trading slumping to a four-week low. The Kuwaiti index, however, climbed 0.3 percent to 6,963 points.
    IQ climbed 2.9 percent to its highest finish since May 6. Earlier this month, the firm reported a 28-percent increase in third-quarter profit, beating analysts’ forecasts on higher-than-expected steel margins.
    “Industries Qatar’s earnings were good, but I don’t think today’s move is about these - it is tracking gains in SABIC,” said Robert Pramberger, acting head of asset management at Doha-based investment company The First Investor. 
    Qatar’s index rose 0.6 percent to 7,774 points. It is up 11.7 percent in 2010 to be the top performing Middle East benchmark this year.
    SABIC rose 0.5 percent to a four-month high, helping the Kingdom’s index end higher for a second day. The Tadawul All-Share Index (TASI) closed 0.21 percent higher at 6,300.29 points. The sector activity for the day was mostly positive with 11 out of 15 sectors closing with gains ranging from 0.09 percent by the hotel and tourism sector to 2.96 percent by the building and construction sector. On the other hand the losing sectors for the day ranged from 0.03 percent by the Insurance sector to 0.33 percent by the banks and financial services sector.
    The overall market breadth for the day was positive with 80 advancers against 37 decliners giving it an AD ratio of 2.16, the Financial Transaction House (FTH) said in its daily market commentary.The liquidity for the day reached SR2.63 billion.
    “The Saudi market is making a catch-up play,” said a Riyadh-based trader at an international bank. Al-Rajhi Bank added 0.3 percent, but other bank stocks gave up initial gains.
    The Dubai index rose 0.2 percent to 1,747 points and the Abu Dhabi index climbed 0.5 percent to 2,821 points.Omani index edged up 0.03 percent to 6,544 points while Bahraini index rose 0.3 percent to 1,470 points.

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