Mideast Stocks: Oil buoys Saudi, Qatar stocks; OPEC+ decision in focus

Saudi and Qatari indexes extended gains on Thursday

  
Screens displaying stock information are seen at Qatar Stock Exchange in Doha, Qatar June 5, 2017.

Screens displaying stock information are seen at Qatar Stock Exchange in Doha, Qatar June 5, 2017.

REUTERS/Stringer

Saudi and Qatari indexes extended gains on Thursday, supported by higher oil prices as investors adjusted positions ahead of an OPEC+ decision on supplies, while markets in the United Arab Emirates were closed for a public holiday.

Brent crude futures rose 35 cents, or 0.5%, to $69.22 a barrel by 1215 GMT while U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures gained 29 cents, or 0.4%, to $65.86.

Saudi Arabia's benchmark index rose 0.3%, with Saudi National Bank increasing 1.8% and Saudi Telecom adding 2.3%. However, the index registered its third weekly loss.

This week's losses mainly include a 4.5% slump on Sunday, its biggest single-day fall in nearly two years, triggered by the panic over the Omicron coronavirus variant.

Saudi Arabia on Wednesday reported its first case of the variant. 

In Qatar, the benchmark gained 0.4% as Gulf's largest lender Qatar National Bank jumped 2.9 % and Industries Qatar added 1.7%.

However, sharia-compliant lender Masraf Al Rayan dropped about 3% after rising as much as 3% in last session as it completed a merger with Al Khalij Commercial Bank.

The Qatari index registered its third consecutive weekly loss.

Outside the Gulf, Egypt's blue-chip index declined 0.9%, dragged by a 1.1% slide in country's top lender Commercial International Bank .

(Reporting by Shamsuddin Mohd in Bengaluru; editing by Uttaresh.V) ((shamsuddin.mohd@thomsonreuters.com; +918067497252;))


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