ICEC

Gulf may consolidate, Saudi faces technical barrier

Gulf stock markets may consolidate on Thursday with Saudi Arabia’s index facing major technical resistance, although a few individual Saudi shares may be buoyed by positive corporate news.

The Saudi index closed 0.1 percent higher at 7,540 points on Wednesday, coming off the day’s high after approaching major technical resistance on last July’s peak of 7,586 points.

However, National Medical Care could attract interest on Thursday after saying it signed a 300 million riyal ($80 million) contract to provide services for three years to GOSI, the Saudi social insurance agency.

Kingdom Holding may also be buoyed by news that a consortium building Jeddah Tower, billed as the world’s tallest skyscraper, signed a 620 million riyal ($165 million) contract for infrastructure work at the site. Kingdom is a member of the consortium and the contract award suggests Saudi authorities do not want the detention of its chairman Prince Alwaleed bin Talal in a corruption crackdown to derail its business.

The global market environment is little changed, with MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan up 0.1 percent and Brent crude oil up 0.2 percent to $69.50 a barrel, returning toward’s Monday’s three-year high of $70.37.

Source: Reuters

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