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MIDEAST STOCKS-Gulf mixed in early trade, Omani falls after budget
January 2, 2017 / 8:32 AM / a year ago

MIDEAST STOCKS-Gulf mixed in early trade, Omani falls after budget

DUBAI, Jan 2 (Reuters) - Gulf stock markets were mixed in early trade on Monday as most reopened after the New Year, with some investors yet to return from holidays.

Oman fell after authorities announced a tight budget for 2017.

Dubai’s index edged up 0.4 percent as much activity focused on speculative stocks including Islamic Arab Insurance , which jumped 14.2 percent and was the most heavily traded issue.

Abu Dhabi fell 0.5 percent, partly due to a 5.7 percent slide in Abu Dhabi National Energy.

Qatar edged down 0.1 percent as Islamic bank Masraf Al Rayan dropped 0.5 percent after saying it would suspend the activities and licence of its brokerage business, Al Rayan Financial Brokerage Co. It said the brokerage’s paid-up capital represented just 0.06 percent of the bank’s total assets.

Saudi Arabia’s index gained 0.3 percent with petrochemicals lagging slightly. Travel agency Al Tayyar, which climbed 7.4 percent on Sunday in unusually heavy trade, added a further 3.8 percent.

Oman’s index dropped 0.5 percent after the government released a 2017 budget plan on Sunday that projected a smaller deficit but included fresh austerity steps and tight curbs on spending because of low oil prices.

Oman Telecommunications dropped 1.4 percent after tumbling 4.3 percent on Sunday in response to a hike in the royalty that it must pay the government. Ooredoo Oman fell 0.7 percent after plunging 7.9 percent on Sunday. (Reporting by Andrew Torchia; editing by John Stonestreet)

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