Stock markets in the Middle East were mixed in narrow ranges on Sunday, with banks and petrochemicals supporting Saudi Arabia while Qatar edged down to a fresh 18-month closing low.
The Saudi index rose 0.2 percent. All but two of the 14 listed petrochemical shares advanced after a pick-up in oil prices at the end of last week, with small polymer maker Nama Chemicals surging 9.5 percent in unusually heavy trade.
Two-thirds of the 12 listed banks rose with Banque Saudi Fransi, climbing 3.8 percent. Qatar’s index edged down 0.1 percent to 8,667 points, its fifth straight session of decline; foreign funds were net sellers, bourse data showed. Doha Bank slipped 0.6 percent.
Dubai’s index edged up 0.1 percent, as builder Drake & Scull rose 1.1 percent in active trade after news that the company’s chairman, Majid al Ghurair, had resigned for “personal reasons”.
DSI will elect a new chairman at board of directors meeting on Tuesday, and investors may hope the change could help the company rebound from losses caused by a slump in the construction industry.
In Abu Dhabi, Dana Gas added 1.2 percent and was again Abu Dhabi’s most heavily traded stock, accounting for almost two-thirds of trading volume.
Abu Dhabi National Energy climbed 6.4 percent but most other shares fell, dragging the main Abu Dhabi index down 0.2 percent.