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MIDEAST STOCKS-Gulf may move sideways, global environment mixed
July 4, 2017 / 5:39 AM / 5 months ago

MIDEAST STOCKS-Gulf may move sideways, global environment mixed

DUBAI, July 4 (Reuters) - Gulf stock markets look set to move sideways on Tuesday with the international environment mixed and uncertainty prevailing over the diplomatic dispute around Qatar.

Brent oil jumped 3.7 percent on Monday, its biggest one-day gain since December 2016, but has fallen back 0.5 percent to $49.41 in Tuesday’s Asian trade. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan is down 0.6 percent.

Foreign ministers from the four Arab countries sanctioning Qatar will meet in Cairo on Wednesday to discuss the dispute. Kuwaiti state media reported Qatari foreign minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani had submitted to Kuwait Doha’s formal response to the Arab states’ demands, but the contents of the response have not been revealed. Recent comments by Qatari officials suggest it is unlikely to acquiesce to enough of the demands by the late Tuesday deadline to avoid further sanctions. But Monday’s buying by foreign investors in the Qatari stock market suggests some funds do not think the additional sanctions would be crippling and there is now value in the market.

Dubai-listed GFH Financial said it had obtained approval from the central bank of Bahrain to buy back up to 5 percent of its issued treasury shares. Much of this good news may already be reflected in the share price, however; the stock jumped 6.3 percent on Monday. (Reporting by Andrew Torchia)

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