July 14, 2019 / 1:41 PM / 8 days ago

MIDEAST STOCKS-Banks boost Saudi, Aldar strong in Abu Dhabi

    * Zain's positive Q2 results boost stocks
    * Saudi banks up, analysts expect strong earnings
    * Union Properties, Emaar Properties up in Dubai
    * Aldar lifts Abu Dhabi after announcing govt partnership
    * Orascom Investment drops in Egypt

    DUBAI, July 14 (Reuters) - Major Gulf stock markets closed
higher on Sunday, mirroring gains late last week in global
markets, and supported by some companies' positive
second-quarter results.
    In Saudi Arabia, the Tadawul main index rose 0.5%,
with banks and petrochemical companies leading the gains.
    Dubai's Arqaam Capital said in a research note last week it
expected Saudi Arabia to deliver the strongest second-quarter
earnings performance in the Gulf.
    "We, however, expect growth to peter out as (the) rate cut
cycle kicks in, given the significant positive ALM (asset
liability management) position of KSA (Saudi) banks," it said.
    Alinma Bank rose 1.2%, while Al Rajhi Banking and
Investment Corp gained 1%.
    Mobile Telecommunications Company Saudi Arabia (Zain Saudi)
 gained 3.2% after reporting an 11% increase in
second-quarter revenues to 2.06 billion riyals ($549.26
million).
    Petchem firms Saudi Kayan Petrochemical Co and
Saudi Basic Industries Corp (SABIC) rose 1.2% and
0.5%, respectively. 
    The Dubai index rose 0.7%, lifted by property
developers Union Properties, up 3.6%, and heavyweight
Emaar Properties, up 1%.
    In Abu Dhabi, where the index was up 0.1%, blue chip
Aldar Properties gained 3.9%.
    The company said last week it had partnered with the Abu
Dhabi government to deliver projects worth 5 billion dirhams
($1.36 billion).
    Abu Dhabi-based Waha Capital was among the top
performers, up 5.3%.
    Waha, which has seen its stocks tumble around 50% since the
beginning of the year, has been in talks with another investment
firm, Gulf Capital, regarding a merger, sources told Reuters
earlier this year.
    Recent changes at management level might suggest the company
is charting a new growth strategy.
    In Egypt, the index shed 1%, as Orascom Investment
Holding dropped 3.9%. Orascom's stocks last week soared
after the firm's board withdrew an offer to acquire Nile Sugar.
    
 SAUDI ARABIA  The index         increased 0.5% to 9,015 points
 ABU DHABI     The index        rose 0.1% to 5,056 points
 DUBAI         The index          gained 0.7% to 2,705 points
 QATAR         The index        shed 0.1% to 10,600 points
 EGYPT         The index          dropped 1% to 13,672 points
 BAHRAIN       The index        was unchanged at 1,537 points
 OMAN          The index        declined 0.4% to 3,794 points
 KUWAIT        The index        lost slightly to 6,775 points
 
    

 (Reporting by Davide Barbuscia; Editing by Mark Potter)
  
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