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MIDEAST STOCKS-Gulf markets mostly down, Egypt up despite clashes
October 7, 2013 / 2:32 PM / 4 years ago

MIDEAST STOCKS-Gulf markets mostly down, Egypt up despite clashes

* Investors take profits before U.S. debt deadline, Eid break

* Mixed Q3 earnings reports trickle in

* Dubai index falls near initial technical support

* Dana Gas tumbles after downgrade

* Egyptian clashes seen less severe than in August

By Olzhas Auyezov

DUBAI, Oct 7 (Reuters) - Gulf markets mostly edged down on Monday as investors took profits ahead of long Eid holidays and the U.S. government moved into the second week of its shutdown. Egypt’s market rose despite at least 53 deaths in Sunday’s political violence.

The Gulf will be closed for most of next week - the time when the U.S. government and Congress must agree on raising the country’s debt ceiling to avoid a default. Although most Gulf investors expect a positive resolution to the U.S. crisis, they will be unable to react to any bad news during the holidays.

Meanwhile, a handful of third-quarter earnings reports announced so far this week have been mixed.

Qatar Gas Transport Company (Nakilat), one of the world’s largest shippers of liquefied natural gas, fell 1.8 percent on Monday after its third-quarter earnings missed the forecast of QNB Financial Services by 9 percent.

Doha Bank was down 0.6 percent after saying it would seek shareholder approval to issue a perpetual debt instrument worth 2 billion riyals ($549 million) to boost Tier 1 capital by next March 30.

Qatar’s main market index fell 0.2 percent.

Saudi Arabia’s Riyad Bank rose 2.3 percent after it reported a third-quarter profit that was 4 percent above analysts’ average estimate - a good omen for other Saudi bank earnings.

But the kingdom’s main index was down 0.3 percent on Monday.

Abu Dhabi’s index fell 0.5 percent with Dana Gas one of the day’s biggest losers as Deutsche Bank cut the stock to sell from hold; it slid 4.4 percent.

The Dubai index’s 1.3 percent drop to 2,778 points brought it close to initial technical support around 2,750 points, where it peaked in August.

Egypt continued to rise, however, climbing 0.7 percent to 5,766 points on Monday, the highest close since Feb. 5.

The clashes between security forces and supporters of ousted Islamist President Mohamed Mursi on Sunday, when the market was closed for a holiday, were a reminder that politics have still not fully stabilised.

But many Egyptian investors can accept such violence if they believe it is helping the government to assert its control. Ashraf Akhnoukh, senior equity sales trader at CIBC Brokerage in Cairo, said investors were actually relieved because Sunday’s clashes were smaller than those which occurred in August.

Foreign investors, who had turned net buyers of Egyptian stocks last Thursday, were net sellers on Monday, bourse data showed.

MONDAY‘S HIGHLIGHTS

QATAR

* The index slipped 0.2 percent to 9,716 points.

SAUDI ARABIA

* The index fell 0.3 percent to 7,977 points.

ABU DHABI

* The index fell 0.5 percent to 3,850 points.

EGYPT

* The index rose 0.7 percent to 5,766 points.

DUBAI

* The index fell 1.3 percent to 2,778 points.

KUWAIT

* The index gained 0.1 percent to 7,665 points.

OMAN

* The index slipped 0.1 percent to 6,648 points.

BAHRAIN

* The index rose 0.4 percent to 1,199 points.

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