* Saudi Electricity drops after surge on budget
* Al Othaim Markets up on shopping mall sale
* Emaar Properties pulls down Dubai
* Trading volume shrinks in Egypt
By Andrew Torchia
DUBAI, Dec 28 Major Gulf stock markets were
mixed in quiet trade on Wednesday although some second-tier
Saudi petrochemical stocks rose sharply after oil prices climbed
The main Saudi index traded higher for much of the
day but closed 0.2 percent lower as Saudi Electricity,
which had risen after last week's state budget for 2017 promised
to raise electricity tariffs, fell back 2.6 percent.
Petrochemical stocks were the top three gainers, with
Petrochem up by its 10 percent daily limit, Chemanol
gaining 8.5 percent and Sipchem adding 5.4
Officials said during budget presentations that they would
protect the petrochemical industry from austerity measures by
delaying any rises in prices for gas feedstock to at least 2019.
Al Othaim Markets added 3.7 percent after saying
it expected to make a capital gain of 112.1 million riyals
($29.9 million) from the sale of a shopping mall in Ha'el City.
Dubai's index dropped 0.6 percent in moderate
trading volume because of a 2.5 percent drop by Emaar Properties
Gulf Navigation closed flat after rising as much
as 1.9 percent on news it formed a partnership with SeaQuest, a
Geneva-based firm providing ship and project management
services. Gulf Navigation will use the tie-up to expand its
business in these areas in the Middle East and Africa, it said.
Abu Dhabi's index was almost flat, supported by a 0.8
percent gain by telecommunications firm Etisalat ETEL.AD. Qatar
was up 0.3 percent as Qatar Navigation added
The Egyptian stock index climbed 0.6 percent as
trading volume shrank by about half from Tuesday's high level.
Qalaa Holdings jumped 7.5 percent, rising in
unusually heavy trade for a second straight day. Arabian Cotton
Ginning dropped back 4.7 percent after surging earlier
this week on the board's plan to split the company into two.
* The index fell 0.2 percent to 7,241 points.
* The index dropped 0.6 percent to 3,520 points.
* The index edged up 0.1 percent to 4,472 points.
* The index rose 0.3 percent to 10,336 points.
* The index climbed 0.6 percent to 12,260 points.
* The index edged up 0.1 percent to 5,753 points.
* The index edged up 0.1 percent to 5,765 points.
* The index rose 0.2 percent to 1,213 points.
(Editing by Andrew Roche)