Mideast Stocks: Saudi index hits 15-year peak; Egypt falls on profit-taking

Saudi Arabia closed at a more than 15-year high on Tuesday as crude prices resumed gains

  
An investor monitors a screen displaying stock information at the Saudi Stock Exchange (Tadawul) in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia January 18, 2016. Image used for illustrative purpose

An investor monitors a screen displaying stock information at the Saudi Stock Exchange (Tadawul) in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia January 18, 2016. Image used for illustrative purpose

REUTERS/Faisal Al Nasser

Saudi Arabia closed at a more than 15-year high on Tuesday as crude prices resumed gains, while the Egyptian bourse retreated as investors booked profits following a recent rally.

Brent crude was up 65 cents, or 0.8%, to $84.98 a barrel by 1206 GMT as a supply crunch in natural gas, electricity and coal continued across the globe while falling temperatures in China revived concerns.

Saudi Arabia's benchmark index rose 0.3%, reaching its highest since July 2006, with Al Rajhi Bank 1120.SE climbing 3.1%, finishing at its highest in over 15 years.

Telecom firm Etihad Etisalat gained about 3% after reporting a rise in quarterly profit.

The kingdom's crude oil exports in August rose for a fourth consecutive month to their highest since January 2021, the Joint Organisation Data Initiative said on Monday. 

Outside the Gulf, Egypt's blue-chip index fell 0.7%, snapping a 10-day winning streak with Commercial International Bank falling 1%.

In Abu Dhabi, the index eased 0.1%, weighed down by a 0.6% fall in top lender First Abu Dhabi Bank and a 0.4% fall in conglomerate International Holding.

Dubai's main share index gave up early gains to close flat, with top lender Emirates NBD losing 0.7% ahead of its earnings.

Logistic firm Aramex advanced 1.9% after it resumed deliveries to and from the United Arab Emirates and Doha.

Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt agreed in January to end a dispute that had led them to sever ties with Qatar in 2017 over accusations that Doha supported "terrorism" - a reference to Islamist groups. Doha denied the charges.

Dubai has signed an accord to build infrastructure in Jammu and Kashmir, the Indian government said on Monday, at a time when the Himalayan region is seeing a resurgence in violence.

The Qatari benchmark added 0.2%, supported by a 1% rise in Qatar National Bank, the Gulf's biggest lender.

Oman was closed for a public holiday.

(Reporting by Ateeq Shariff in Bengaluru; editing by Jason Neely) ((AteeqUr.Shariff@thomsonreuters.com; +918061822788;))


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