DUBAI Oct 17 Saudi Arabia's stock market fell
in early trade on Monday after another set of disappointing
third-quarter earnings. Other markets in the region were also
weak in line, with the trend in Asia.
The Saudi index slipped 0.7 percent in the first
hour as Alinma Bank, the most heavily traded stock,
dropped 2.2 percent.
Alinma, the latest in a string of Saudi banks to report weak
quarterly earnings as the slow economy increases impairment
charges on loans, posted a 16.8 percent fall in third-quarter
net profit to 312 million riyals ($83.2 million); analysts had
on average forecast 409.1 million riyals.
Medical insurer BUPA Arabia, which had dropped 4.7
percent on Sunday after posting an 8.9 percent drop in its
third-quarter net income, fell a further 3.3 percent.
Najran Cement fell 2.6 percent after reporting a
52 percent year-on-year drop in third-quarter net profit.
Top petrochemical producer Saudi Basic Industries,
however, rose 0.6 percent before its quarterly earnings
announcement, expected on Tuesday.
Dubai's stock index fell 0.6 percent as district
cooling firm Tabreed sank 3.5 percent in thin trade,
and Emaar Malls lost 2.7 percent.
Abu Dhabi's index slid 1.2 percent as blue chip
telecommunications operator Etisalat dropped 1.3
percent. Qatar's index edged down only 0.1 percent,
supported by a 1.3 percent gain by Qatar National Bank
National Bank of Kuwait sank 3.5 percent after
reporting a 6.4 percent rise in third-quarter net profit that
was in line with estimates; Kuwait's stock index was 0.6
(Reporting by Andrew Torchia, editing by Larry King)