Saudi Arabian shares fell sharply on Thursday, incurring losses across the board due to weak oil prices, while the Qatari benchmark was dragged lower by heavyweight Industries Qatar.
Oil prices slumped 5% in the previous session, with Brent hitting a four-month low, as surging coronavirus infections in the United States and Europe prompted renewed lockdowns and raised concerns of new declines in fuel demand.
The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies will have to contend with a "lot of demand issues" before raising supply in January 2021, given throughput cuts by oil refiners, the head of Saudi Aramco's trading arm said.
In Qatar, the index retreated 1.1%, with most stocks trading lower. Petrochemical firm Industries Qatar dropped 2.1%.
The company earlier this week had reported a net profit of 951 million riyals ($261.26 million) for the first nine months of 2020, down from 2 billion riyals a year earlier.
Qatar Insurance, which posted loss for nine months ended Sept. 30, was down 1.6%.
Markets in the United Arab Emirates are closed for a public holiday.
($1 = 3.6400 Qatar riyals)
(Reporting by Ateeq Shariff in Bengaluru; editing by Uttaresh.V) ((AteeqUr.Shariff@thomsonreuters.com; +918061822788;))