Mideast Stocks: Major Gulf markets mixed; Aramco's Q2 profit declines

Aramco's net profit fell to $6.56 billion


Dubai's stock market traded lower early on Sunday, hurt by losses at financials and property shares, while other major bourses in the Gulf were little changed.

Saudi Arabia's benchmark index rose 0.3%, with Al Rajhi Bank gaining 0.7%, while oil giant Saudi Aramco was up 0.3% despite reporting a fall in second-quarter profit.

Aramco's net profit fell to 24.6 billion riyals ($6.56 billion) for the quarter to June 30 from 92.6 billion riyals a year earlier. 

The world's biggest oil exporter said the rapid spread of COVID-19 globally had significantly reduced demand for crude oil, natural gas and petroleum products.

Dubai's main share index lost 0.6%, driven down by a 1.6% fall in Emirates NBD Bank and a 1.1% decrease in blue-chip developer Emaar Properties.

In Abu Dhabi, the index added 0.1%, helped by a 0.4% rise in the country's largest lender First Abu Dhabi Bank.

On Saturday, the United Arab Emirates' central bank said it was temporarily relaxing two key requirements to improve liquidity and funding needs of banks to encourage them to lend more to businesses under the COVID-19 economic stimulus plan. 

The Qatari index slipped 0.2%, with Qatar National Bank falling 0.8% and Qatar Insurance Company losing 1.8%.

($1 = 3.7501 riyals)

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

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