Market Update: The Arab world's biggest stock market, the Saudi Arabian Tadawul suffered further losses at the open as investor concerns that political unrest would spread to the kingdom escalated - with video.
Saudi market continues to suffer
Shares on the region's largest oil producer fell nearly 4 per cent to 5,322.87 points, 15 minutes after the opening bell, extending losses that have plagued the market all week.
Dubai's main stock market also fell to the lowest in almost seven years, extending an earlier week slump as investors struggled to gain clarity on social unrest across the Middle East.
The Dubai Financial Market (DFM) slipped 3.48 per cent to 1,375.20 points as heavy weight stocks such as Emaar Properties took a hit. Shares in the developer slumped 7.1 per cent to 2.47 per cent, the lowest point in a year.
Tabreed, also known as National Central Cooling Company, also drove further share sell-off as it fell to a near-decade low of 96 fils. The last time the company's shares traded lower was in 2001.
The company said it will receive Dh3.1 billion in support from Abu Dhabi government-owned Mubadala Development to help re-pay its outstanding debts but investors responded negatively as it fell nearly 9 per cent.
Oil has been trading at two and half year highs, and this morning was hovering at $100 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
The Tadawul yesterday retreated the most since November 2008, the second low point this week.
Elsewhere in the region, Qatar's measure slumped to a 5-month low, and in Kuwait, eyes were on the country's telecom's operator, Zain, which fell 5.8 per cent to 1,280.00 points, a two-week low. The company has said it has not received new offers for it's Zain Saudi stake, in response to reports that Etisalat had missed another deadline to buy the 46 per cent stake. Etisalat, the UAE's largest company by market capitalisation was flat at Dh10.85.