Major stock markets in the Gulf closed higher on Monday, with the Saudi index leading gains after a slew of strong corporate earnings.
Saudi Arabia's benchmark index rose 0.9%, boosted by a 1.8% gain in Al Rajhi Bank and a 8.9% surge in Bank Al Jazira, which reported an increase in its quarterly net profit.
Elsewhere, Saudi National Bank (SNB) closed 0.9% higher. The kingdom's largest lender posted a 20.3% rise in first-quarter net profit on Monday with lower impairments and higher fees, in a sign that the economy has been recovering from last year's pandemic lockdowns.
In Dubai, the main share index gained 0.7%, with Emirates NBD Bank advancing 2.1%, while Dubai Islamic Bank, the United Arab Emirates' largest lender, closed 0.9% higher.
The Abu Dhabi index added 0.5%, bolstered by a 0.7% gain in top lender First Abu Dhabi Bank FAB.AD while telecoms giant Etisalat was up 0.6%.
Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank finished 2.3% higher, after the United Arab Emirates' third-biggest lender reported soaring profit as it recovers from impairments linked to troubled hospital operator NMC Health.
ADCB reported first-quarter net profit of 1.1 billion dirhams ($299.50 million), a 436% increase year-on-year.
In Qatar, the benchmark gained 0.4%, bolstered by a 3.4% jump in Commercial Bank after the lender reported a net profit of 602.7 million riyals ($165.58 million) for the first-quarter, up from 402.1 million a year earlier.
Among others, petrochemical maker Industries Qatar gained 0.4% following an increase in its first-quarter net profit.
Outside the Gulf, Egypt's blue-chip index fell 0.7%, with most its individual stocks in negative territory, including Fawry for Banking Technology , which declined 2.8%.
($1 = 3.6728 UAE dirham)
($1 = 3.6400 Qatar riyals)
(Reporting by Ateeq Shariff in Bengaluru; Editing by Kirsten Donovan) ((AteeqUr.Shariff@thomsonreuters.com; +918061822788;))