September 10, 2017 / 5:42 AM / 9 months ago

MIDEAST STOCKS-Lack of fresh news may keep markets trading in narrow range

DUBAI, Sept 10 (Reuters) - Stock markets in the region may move little in thin trade on Sunday in the absence of fresh news to move markets aggressively.

Brent futures settled at $53.78 a barrel on Friday and ended the week up 1.9 percent. U.S. shares were mixed, with the S&P 500 ending slightly lower as investors braced for hurricane Irma while the pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index rose 0.12 percent.

Regionally, Saudi Arabia on Saturday suspended any dialogue with Qatar, accusing it of “distorting facts”, just after a report of a phone call between the leaders of both countries suggested a breakthrough in the Gulf dispute.

“The talks between Saudi Arabia and Qatar will be a non-event for the market, on the contrary it signals to the market that this won’t easily be resolved,” said a regional fund manager, who declined to be named.

Saudi Arabia National Shipping (Bahri) may attract some interest after it had received the fourth, of a total of five very large crude carriers it had purchased in 2016. The newly received carrier is expected to start commercial operation in October. (Reporting by Celine Aswad; Editing by Saeed Azhar)

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