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MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi shares drop after PMI points to economic slowdown
November 3, 2015 / 1:08 PM / 2 years ago

MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi shares drop after PMI points to economic slowdown

* Saudi index nears technical support in rising turnover
    * Saudi credit default swaps at highest level since June
    * Dubai rises on low-priced speculative stocks
    * Egypt drops after poor PMI

    By Andrew Torchia
    DUBAI, Nov 3 (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia's stock market fell
sharply on Tuesday after data pointed to an economic slowdown
due to low oil prices. 
    Other major Middle Eastern markets fared better, with
second-tier stocks favoured by speculators lifting Dubai.
    The seasonally adjusted Emirates NBD Saudi Arabia Purchasing
Managers' Index, an indicator of growth in the non-oil private
sector, fell last month to 55.7 - its lowest since the survey
began in August 2009 - from 56.5 in September. 
    Meanwhile the cost of insuring Saudi Arabia's sovereign debt
against default edged up to its highest level since June 2009,
following a Standard & Poor's downgrade of the kingdom's debt
rating on Friday. 
    The Saudi stock index sank 1.6 percent on Tuesday to
6,955 points, near technical support at its August low of 6,921
points. Turnover rose as the market dropped, a negative
technical sign.
    Petrochemical blue chip Saudi Basic Industries 
slid 2.7 percent and industrial zone developer Emaar Economic
City dropped by the same amount.
    Kingdom Holding fell 2.3 percent after saying it
expected no financial impact from its sale of a 29.9 percent
stake in media firm Saudi Research and Marketing Group (SRMG)
. SRMG climbed 9.9 percent after a 7.2 percent gain on
    Saudi Printing and Packaging Co also surged,
adding 9.9 percent after a 9.8 percent leap on Monday. It has
been rising in heavy trade since shortly after it reported
quarterly earnings on Oct. 20.
    Elsewhere in the Gulf, Dubai's index rose 0.8
percent, though activity focused on low-priced speculative
shares; HITS Telecom was the most active stock,
climbing 2.4 percent.
    Du, the United Arab Emirates' second biggest
telecoms operator, closed 1.0 percent higher despite missing
estimates with a 12.3 percent fall in third-quarter net profit
to 489.8 million dirhams ($133.4 million). Two analysts polled
by Reuters had on average forecast 521.3 million dirhams.
    Abu Dhabi gained 0.5 percent as Aldar Properties
 surged 4.6 percent.
    Qatar's index fell 0.3 percent as Industries Qatar
 slipped 0.4 percent. In a fresh sign of tightening
banking liquidity in Qatar, the central bank halved the size of
a planned Treasury bill sale on Tuesday and yields rose sharply
from last month's auction. 
    Egypt's index rose in early trade but closed 0.02
percent lower after a disappointing Purchasing Managers' Index;
the Egyptian PMI fell to an eight-month low of 47.2 in October
from 50.2 in September, dropping below the 50-point mark that
separates growth from contraction. 
    * The index sank 1.6 percent to 6,955 points.
    * The index rose 0.8 percent to 3,522 points. 
    * The index climbed 0.5 percent to 4,322 points.
    * The index fell 0.3 percent to 11,517 points.
    * The index edged down 0.02 percent to 7,433
    * The index edged up 0.2 percent to 5,794 points.

    * The index edged up 0.2 percent to 5,948 points.
    * The index edged down 0.1 percent to 1,260 points.

 (editing by John Stonestreet)

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