Stock markets saw mixed trade across the region on Sunday, with Kuwait falling by more than two per cent.
Gulf markets mixed on oil, economic outlook
DUBAI // Stock markets saw mixed trade across the Gulf region on Sunday, with Kuwait falling by more than two per cent, while investors piled into blue-chips in other markets, taking advantage of low stock valuations. But sentiment was still cautious amid worries about the economic outlook and the impending fourth-quarter earnings parade. "The conditions that have affected the market still remain: oil still remains low, the global economy is still weak so nothing's changed," said Adel Nasr, local brokerage manager at United Securities in Muscat.
Oil prices were stubbornly below $40 a barrel, despite rising $2.36 to settle at $37.71 a barrel in New York on Friday, breaking a nine-day stretch of losing sessions. Oman was the biggest gainer in the region surging more than 4 per cent, its biggest one-day rise in more than 7 weeks, on strong interest in blue-chips by local institutions. Kuwait was the biggest loser, sliding 2.4 per cent to its lowest close since April 2005 as investors saw a gloomy outlook for company results early next year, while doubts lingered over the ability of investment companies to meet their obligations.
Saudi Arabia ended more than 2 per cent higher after falling for four consecutive trading sessions. Qatar rose by over 1 per cent while Bahrain fell for a third trading day. UAE markets were closed to mark the new Islamic year. *Reuters