Saudi markets claw back from losses as oil supply worries ease

Saudi Arabia’s markets on Monday recouped some of the previous session’s losses after top oil producer Saudi Aramco assured some of its clients that there will be no shortage in supplies.

An attack on Saudi Arabian oil facilities on Saturday shut about 5 percent of global supply, sending oil prices higher as much as 19.5 percent, their biggest intra-day percentage gain since the Gulf War in 1991.

Stock market sentiment was also helped by a Barclays statement that attacks were unlikely to reduce the kingdom’s oil exports dramatically.

Saudi’s stock index was up 0.5 percent, with Al Rajhi Bank and its biggest petrochemical maker, Saudi Basic Industries, both climbing 0.9 percent.

The index is still in the red on a year-to-date basis after Sunday’s decline, with a 0.5 percent loss for 2019.

Saudi stocks have been on the back foot in recent weeks due to expensive valuations, weak oil prices and concerns about the economic outlook.

Most other major Gulf markets traded lower. Qatar’s index rose 0.3 percent, buoyed by a 1.4 percent gain in petrochemical maker Industries Qatar and a 0.5 percent increase in Qatar National Bank.

Dubai’s index was down 0.3 percent, with blue-chip developer Emaar Properties shedding 0.6 percent, while Dubai Islamic Bank dropped 0.7 percent.

Dubai property prices have slumped 25 percent-35 percent since mid-2014 with no respite in sight. Prices are likely to fall further this year and next amid a slowing economy and an oversupply of housing units.

The Abu Dhabi index edged down 0.2 percent, dragged by an 8.5 percent decline in Abu Dhabi National Energy (TAQA).

Source: Reuters

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