x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 22 January 2018

Qatar banks interest traders on exchange

Markets Update: Qatar shares rise at the open on positive central bank data on the country's lenders.

Qatar's banks rose the most at the open on the Qatar Exchange, after the country's central bank said total credit reached 339.3 billion Qatari rials in June.

The country's loan book was up 5.4 per cent in June, when compared with May, and up 14.3 per cent when compared with the same period last year. Loans to deposits remained unchanged at 96 per cent. While loan loss provisioning to loans stood at 1.82 per cent in June, compared with 1.85 per cent in May.

"The growth is largely attributable to the public sector and to the private sector to some extent. Public sector continues to be the key growth engine and is showing some pick up towards the second half of the year as expected," said Jaap Meijer, a banking analyst at HC Alembic Securities in Dubai.

Commercial Bank of Qatar was up 1.1 per cent to 72.10 rials a share. Qatar International Islamic Bank rose 0.8 per cent to 49.65 rials. Qatar Islamic Bank added 0.6 per cent to 78.90 rials.

Qatar's benchmark, the QE Index, added 0.1 per cent to 8401.66 points.

In the UAE, Abu Dhabi's benchmark, the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange General Index was unchanged at 2694.61 points on low volumes. The Dubai Financial Market General Index was also unchanged at 1522.19 points.

Elsewhere in the region, Oman International Bank added 0.3 per cent to 0.26 Omani rials after the lender said it was considering a strategic alliance with another financial institution."This strategic review will evaluate potential operating models for the future and will consider whether the bank should remain independent, whether it should form a strategic alliance with another leading financial institution or whether it should pursue other different forms of cooperation," the lender said in a filing to the Muscat Securities Market.

Kuwait's measure added 0.3 per cent to 6095.90 points. Bahrain's index lost 0.3 per cent to 1298.35 points. The Saudi Tadawul All-Share Index rose 0.5 per cent to 6522.52 points.