October 1, 2019 / 1:07 PM / 14 days ago

MIDEAST STOCKS-Financials lead Egypt higher as banks weigh on Saudi

    * All financial stocks gain in Egypt
    * Saudi's Metlife extends losses on merger deal
    * Qatar snaps three-day losing streak
    * Amlak sees biggest surge in over four years

    By Ateeq Shariff
    Oct 1 (Reuters) - A rebound in financial shares boosted
Egypt's blue-chip stock index on Tuesday, a day after it took a
breather to snap three straight days of gains, while Saudi
Arabia reversed early gains as most of its banks declined.
    Egypt's blue-chip index gained 1.7% with its
largest bank, Commercial International Bank, leaping
3.1% and El Sewedy Electric increasing 2.3%.
    Egypt's M2 money supply growth accelerated to 11.78%
year-on-year in August, Reuters reported on Tuesday citing data
from the central bank.
    The money supply stood at 3.93 trillion Egyptian pounds 
($242.29 billion) as of the end of August from 3.88 trillion
pounds at the end of July.
    Saudi Arabia's index dropped 0.5% with most of its
banks on the index sliding. Al Rajhi Bank decreased
0.6% and Riyad Bank declined 2.1%.
    Metlife AIG ANB plunged 4.7% to be the top loser
on the index. Walaa Cooperative Insurance said on
Sunday it had a binding agreement to acquire Metlife in an
all-share deal.
    Saudi Arabia's economy slowed sharply in the second quarter
amid oil output cuts by the world's largest crude exporter,
government data showed on Monday, raising fears of an economic
contraction this year.
    The kingdom last contracted in 2017 before recovering to
2.2% growth last year, helped by strong oil output.
    Qatar's index closed 0.7% higher, ending three
straight days of losses. Qatar Islamic Bank added 1.5%
and Commercial Bank climbed 2.6%.
    Rating agency Moody's said last week the outlook for Qatar's
banking sector remained stable as infrastructure spending drives
economic growth.
    In Dubai, the index edged 0.1% down led by a 0.6%
fall in Dubai Islamic Bank and a 2.3% slide in Dubai
Investments.
    Amlak Finance soared 14.8%, however, its biggest
rise since June 2015. The sharia-compliant finance company said
it has been awarded 780 million dirhams ($212.37 million) in a
court ruling against an arbitration being administrated since
2013.
    The Abu Dhabi index also ended 0.1% lower, with
Emirates Telecommunications losing 0.7% and Aldar
Properties down 1.9%.
    The consumer price index (CPI) in the United Arab Emirates
(UAE) fell 2.04% in August compared to a year earlier, according
to government statistics published on Tuesday.
    
 SAUDI ARABIA  The index         fell 0.5% to 8,053 points
 ABU DHABI     The index        lost 0.1% to 5,054 points
 DUBAI         The index          slipped 0.1% to 2,779 points
 QATAR         The index        rose 0.7% to 10,435 points
 EGYPT         The index          up 1.7% to 14,497 points
 BAHRAIN       The index        dropped 0.1% to 1,516 points
 OMAN          The index        added 0.5% to 4,036 points
 KUWAIT        The index        was down 0.2% at 6,161 points
 

($1 = 3.7511 riyals)

($1 = 3.6400 Qatar riyals)

($1 = 3.6729 UAE dirham)

($1 = 16.2200 Egyptian pounds)

 (Reporting by Ateeq Shariff in Bengaluru, editing by Ed Osmond)
  
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