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Most major Gulf markets end higher; Dubai eases

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(Reuters) – Most major Gulf markets ended higher on Sunday, with petrochemical shares boosting the Saudi index, while Dubai bucked the trend close lower.

FILE PHOTO: A Saudi trader observes the stock market on monitors at Falcom stock exchange agency in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia February 7, 2018. REUTERS/Faisal Al Nasser

The kingdom’s benchmark index .TASI rose 0.7%, with Saudi Kayan Petrochemical Company 2350.SE and National Industrialization Company 2060.SE gaining 4.6% and 4.8%, respectively.

Amongst others, Najran Cement 3002.SE surged 9.9%, extending gains from the previous session when the cement producer proposed a first-half dividend of 0.75 riyal per share.

Dubai’s main share index .DFMGI gave up early gains to closed 0.3%. Emirates NBD Bank ENBD.DU declined 1.4%, while Aramex ARMX.DU retreated 2.3%.

The logistics firm on Wednesday confirmed that a portion of its warehouse facility in Morocco had been damaged in a fire. Any financial impact from the incident will be reflected in the firm’s third-quarter financial report.

Arabtec Holding ARTC.DU closed up 0.7%. The loss-making contractor has hired advisory firm AlixPartners to help it restructure the company’s debt, Reuters reported on Thursday, citing two sources familiar with the matter.

Arabtec postponed its shareholder meeting which was called to decide whether to continue operating or liquidate and dissolve the firm after the pandemic hit projects and led to additional costs.

The Abu Dhabi index .ADI added 0.4%, helped by a 0.9% rise in the United Arab Emirates’ largest lender First Abu Dhabi Bank FAB.AD and a 1% gain in Aldar Properties ALDAR.AD.

In Qatar, the index .QSI gained 0.3%, with Qatar Insurance QINS.QA jumping 6.1%.

Outside the Gulf, Egypt’s blue-chip index .EGX30 edged down 0.1%, hurt by a 3.4% fall in tobacco monopoly Eastern Company EAST.CA.

Reporting by Ateeq Shariff in Bengaluru; Editing by Alison Williams

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