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MIDEAST STOCKS-Gulf mixed as Arabtec buoys Dubai while ex-dividend Barwa hits Qatar
March 6, 2017 / 1:48 PM / in 7 months

MIDEAST STOCKS-Gulf mixed as Arabtec buoys Dubai while ex-dividend Barwa hits Qatar

* Most of Dubai’s 10 most active stocks fall

* Arabtec announced three-year recovery plan last week

* Qatar banks mostly down after S&P cuts sovereign outlook

* Select petrochemicals support Saudi

* Egypt continues rise on stamp duty optimism

By Andrew Torchia

DUBAI, March 6 (Reuters) - Stock markets in the Gulf closed with mixed fortunes on Monday, with a rebound by financially troubled builder Arabtec boosting Dubai while Barwa Real Estate pulled down Qatar as the company went ex-dividend.

Dubai’s index added 0.4 percent as Arabtec , the most heavily traded stock, surged 6.4 percent on the three-year recovery plan outlined by the loss-making company late last week, including disposals of non-core assets.

Six of Dubai’s other most active stocks fell on Monday and two were flat.

In Qatar, the index gave up 0.9 percent as the market reopened after a public holiday. Barwa sank 8.7 percent. The board had recommended a cash dividend of 2.5 riyals per share, up from the previous year’s 2.2 riyals.

Banks were mostly lower, with Qatar National Bank down 0.6 percent, after Standard & Poor’s revised its sovereign credit outlook for Qatar to negative from stable. S&P said the country’s external liquidity position had weakened with rapid growth of banks’ foreign liabilities and public sector debt.

However, Medicare Group jumped 5.7 percent. It has been extremely volatile since early February, when it reported a 42 percent fall in fourth-quarter net profit and cut its dividend.

The Saudi Arabian index edged up by 0.1 percent on strength in a few petrochemical stocks. Yansab rose by 1.8 percent and Saudi Basic Industries was up 1 percent.

In Egypt, the index rose by 1 percent. It has been gaining strongly since Thursday after the finance minister said he would propose only a gradual introduction of a stamp duty on transactions to minimise the impact on market activity.

Real estate company Talaat Mostafa climbed by 3.6 percent.

MONDAY‘S HIGHLIGHTS

SAUDI ARABIA

* The index edged up 0.1 percent to 6,976 points.

DUBAI

* The index rose 0.4 percent to 3,557 points.

ABU DHABI

* The index was up 0.9 percent at 4,604 points.

QATAR

* The index fell 0.9 percent to 10,623 points.

KUWAIT

* The index lost 0.8 percent to 6,751 points.

EGYPT

* The index climbed 1.0 percent to 12,623 points.

OMAN

* The index edged down 0.1 percent to 5,800 points.

BAHRAIN

* The index slipped 0.3 percent to 1,338 points.

Editing by David Goodman

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