Most stock markets in the Gulf gained on Thursday, as investors continued cheering a soft U.S. inflation report despite the Federal Reserve slashing its forecast to only one rate cut worth 25 basis points later this year.

Most Gulf currencies are pegged to the dollar and any U.S. monetary policy changes are usually followed by Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Qatar.

The Abu Dhabi benchmark index rose 0.6% with Alpha Dhabi rising 3.4% and conglomerate International Holding Co (IHC) climbing 1.2%. IHC is part of a business empire including climate fund Alterra, overseen by its chair Sheikh Tahnoon bin Zayed al-Nahyan. Meanwhile, Brookfield Asset Management said it opened fundraising for Catalytic Transition Fund with anchor commitment from UAE-backed Altérra, targeting to raise upto $5 billion.

The Qatari benchmark index rose 0.2%, extending its gain to a 10th session, the longest rally in nearly six months. Qatar National Bank, the region's largest lender, added 0.6% and Qatar Gas Transport advanced 3%.

Dubai's benchmark stock index inched up marginally after the previous session of loss, with Emaar Properties rising 1.2% and Dubai Islamic Bank adding 1.3%, while tolls operator Salik Company slipped 1.2%.

Saudi Arabia's benchmark stock index dropped 1.3% to 11,499, its lowest level in six months with most of its constituents posting losses. ACWA Power declined 5.3% and Saudi Aramco dropped 2.1%. U.S. liquefied natural gas (LNG) provider NextDecade has signed a non-binding agreement with oil major Aramco to supply 1.2 million tonnes per annum (MTPA) of LNG for 20 years.

However, shares of the fintech firm Rasan Information Technology and aluminum products maker Al Taiseer Group Talco Industrial jumped 30% and 14.4%, respectively, from their IPO prices in market debut. Rasan's stock traded at 48.10 riyals, well above IPO price of 37 riyals, while Talco' shares were at 49.20 riyals, higher than its IPO price of 43 riyals.

Outside the Gulf, Egypt's blue-chip index was up for a fourth consecutive session to end 1.1% higher, lifted by gains in most sectors. Abu Qir Fertilizers climbed 7.7% and Fawry for Banking Technology rose 1.1%.

  • SAUDI ARABIA fell 1.3% to 11,499
  • KUWAIT ended flat at 7,655
  • QATAR added 0.2% to 9,667
  • EGYPT gained 1.1% to 26,418
  • BAHRAIN added 0.2% to 2,041
  • OMAN lost 0.5% to 4,679
  • ABU DHABI gained 0.6% to 8,979
  • DUBAI ended flat at 3,980

(Reporting by Md Manzer Hussain; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)