Mideast Stocks: Lender Emirates NBD drags on Dubai index

Most Gulf markets in retreat

  
An investor monitors an electronic board displaying stock information at the Dubai Financial Market June 13, 2013.

An investor monitors an electronic board displaying stock information at the Dubai Financial Market June 13, 2013.

REUTERS/Ahmed Jadallah

Most Gulf markets ended lower on Tuesday, with the Dubai index particularly hard hit by losses for top lender Emirates NBD.

Saudi Arabia's benchmark index closed 0.2% down after oil behemoth Saudi Aramco lost 0.4% and Saudi Telecom Company declined by 1%.

Saudi Aramco and petrochemicals company Saudi Basic Industries have decided to re-evaluate their $20 billion crude-oil-to-chemicals project and are now looking at integrating existing facilities instead. 

The decision comes as oil companies globally re-assess energy projects to conserve cash, with a collapse in demand caused by the coronavirus pandemic threatening to keep crude prices weak for a protracted period.

Shares in Saudi Basic Industries were down 0.5%.

Dubai's main share index retreated 1.3%, dragged down by a 3.2% fall Emirates NBD after a sharp decline in quarterly profit, hit by a rise in bad debt charges resulting from the COVID-19 crisis. 

Elsewhere, sharia-compliant lender Dubai Islamic Bank was down 1.7%.

The Abu Dhabi index slipped 0.4%, with largest lender First Abu Dhabi Bank losing 0.7% and Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank dropping by 2.9%.

In Qatar, the index edged up by 0.2%, helped by a 1.4% gain for Qatar Gas Transport Company (Nakilat) after it reported a nine-month net profit up 23.6% year on year. 

($1 = 3.6728 UAE dirham)

($1 = 3.6400 Qatar riyals)

(Reporting by Ateeq Shariff in Bengaluru Editing by David Goodman) ((AteeqUr.Shariff@thomsonreuters.com; +918061822788;))

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