The Saudi market rose moderately on Monday, recovering some losses from previous sessions with most of its stocks gaining. Other indexes in the Gulf were mixed with Abu Dhabi and Qatar extending losses following last week’s oil tanker attacks.
The United States blamed Iran for attacks on two tankers in the Gulf of Oman on Thursday raising fears of a new U.S.-Iranian confrontation. Tehran denied the allegation.
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on Saturday urged the international community to take a "decisive stand" but said Riyadh does not want a war.
The Saudi index rose 1% with Saudi Arabian Mining Co gaining 3.9% and Dar Al Arkan Real Estate Development Company4300.SE jumping 6.2%.
National Commercial Bank (NCB) 1180.SE and Riyad Bank added 1% and 1.3% respectively after JP Morgan raised their target prices.
In Egypt, the index .EGX30 increased 0.2 percent with Commercial International Bank COMI.CA closing 1.1% higher and Elsewedy Electric was up 2.4%.
The latter on Sunday acquired a portfolio of renewable energy assets in Greece for a total consideration of 55 million euros.
The Abu Dhabi index extended its losses for the third straight session mainly pressured by its financial stocks. A 0.8% slide in First Abu Dhabi Bank FAB.AD , and a 2.7% drop in Abu Dhabi Commercial Bankpushed the index down by 1.1%.
Emirates Telecommunications (Etisalat) was down 1.2%.
A prospectus published on Saturday by the bourse regulator AMMC showed that the Moroccan government is selling 8% stake in Maroc Telecom, in which Etisalat owns 53%, to local investors.
Analysts see the stake sale to local institutional investors as a way to prevent Etisalat further increasing its stake.
Qatar's index declined 0.9 percent with market heavyweight Industries Qatar dropping 2.1% and Commercial Bank losing 3.1%.
In Dubai, the index traded flat with telecom operator Emirates Integrated Telecommunications gaining 1%. The company said on Sunday the United Arab Emirates' sovereign wealth fund, Emirates Investment Authority, had increased its stake by buying 463.3 million shares from Mamoura Diversified Global Holding and General Investments.
Islamic Arab Insurance (Salama) surged 3.9%. On Monday, the board elected Jassim Alseddiqi as chairman.
(Reporting by Ateeq Shariff in Bengaluru; Editing by Toby Chopra) ((AteeqUr.Shariff@thomsonreuters.com; +918067497129;))