Gulf stocks move narrowly, Saudi petchems firm with oil

Gulf stock markets moved little in early trade Thursday as Saudi petrochemical shares firmed moderately in response to higher oil prices, but Qatar pulled back after a surge in past days due to hopes for inflows of foreign funds.

The Saudi stock index was flat after 45 minutes as petrochemical giant Saudi Basic Industries climbed 0.9 percent but the banking sector edged down.

Dubai’s stock index edged down 0.1 percent as GFH Financial, a stock that attracts speculators and was the most heavily traded share, rose 1.0 percent but Emaar Properties slipped 0.3 percent.

Qatar’s index pulled back 0.5 percent after gaining earlier this week on expectations for fund inflows in mid-September, when index compiler FTSE will upgrade the market to emerging market status.

Among stocks which may become components of FTSE’s emerging market index and led the bourse up this week, Qatar National Bank fell back 1.0 percent and Qatar Insurance dropped 0.4 percent.

Source: Reuters