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Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 10 December 2018

Arabian Gulf stocks narrowly mixed, Saudi Kayan rises on earnings

Damac shares fall as investors book profits

Saudi stocks fell in early trading in spite of gains by Saudi Kayan. Hasan Jamali / AP Photo
Saudi stocks fell in early trading in spite of gains by Saudi Kayan. Hasan Jamali / AP Photo

Gulf stock markets were mixed in narrow ranges early on Tuesday though petrochemical maker Saudi Kayan rose in response to better-than-expected second-quarter earnings. The Saudi index edged down 0.1 per cent in the first half-hour as Saudi Kayan, the most heavily traded stock, rose 2.2 per cent. Its second-quarter net profit climbed to 242 million Saudi riyals (U$64.5m) from 97.3m riyals a year ago; analysts had on average predicted 212m riyals.

Jouf Cement jumped 9.5 per cent after shareholders approved a 10 per cent capital increase via an issue of bonus shares, to be paid for with the company's retained earnings.

National Co for Glass Industries surged 7.1 per cent after reporting a 224 per cent leap in quarterly net profit, although operating profit actually fell sharply.

Qassim Cement fell 0.4 per cent after it reported a quarterly profit of 53.2m riyals versus 113.9m riyals year ago; analysts had on average expected 66m riyals.

In Dubai, the index edged down 0.2 per cent after rising for seven straight sessions through Monday. Property firm Damac, one of the stocks which led the rally, fell back 4.3 per cent.

Qatar's index slipped 0.3 per cent as Masraf Al Rayan , the second-largest bank by market value, dropped 1.1 per cent.

It reported flat quarterly net profit, in line with analysts' forecasts, suggesting the impact of Qatar's diplomatic crisis has so far been minor. Customer deposits were 61.21 billion riyals ($16.8bn) at the end of June, up 5.9 per cent from a year earlier but down 3 per cent from the previous quarter.

Share prices were unchanged for Al Khalij Commercial Bank , which reported flat first-half earnings, and Ahli Bank, which reported a 3 per cent rise in net profit for the first half.

*Reuters