July 1, 2019 / 1:01 PM / 3 months ago

MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi extends gains as global rally lifts most of Gulf

    * Saudi rises for a fifth session
    * Saudi's Tihama climbs on higher FY profit
    * Insurer Medgulf rises after tax settlement
    * Dubai's top lender gains on Denizbank deal

    By Shakeel Ahmad
    July 1 (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia's stock market rose for a
fifth straight day on Monday as most major Gulf bourses gained,
reflecting positive global market sentiment after the United
States and China reached a trade war truce.
    Saudi's index was up 0.4% with banks leading gains.
Al Rajhi Bank rose 0.9% and Arab National Bank
 climbed 2.9%.
    The index is up 13% this year, led by foreign investors, who
have been net buyers of Saudi equities in recent months.
    Three of five tranches of Saudi stocks have joined the FTSE
emerging market index this year and completed the first phase of
joining the MSCI emerging market benchmark in May, with the
second phase due in August. 
    "We estimate that the MSCI inclusion process will see more
than $13 billion of passive flows coming in to the Saudi market
in 2019," said Hootan Yazhari, head of MENA & frontier markets
research, Bank of America Merrill Lynch. Assuming Saudi will
have around 3% weight in the FTSE emerging market index would
add "upwards of another $6 billion". 
    Tihama Advertising And Public Relations And Marketing
Holding moved 2.7% higher after posting a higher
full-year profit.
    Insurer Medgulf gained 1.8% after it agreed 115.6
million riyals ($30.83 million) of settlement with the General
Authority Of Zakat and Tax.
    Qatar's index rose 1% to climb for a third straight
session. Qatar Islamic Bank was 1.8% higher and
petrochemical maker Industries Qatar was up 1.7%.
    The index has gained in recent sessions as a 10-to-one stock
split for companies on the exchange is being phased in from June
9, in a bid to boost liquidity by encouraging smaller investors
to buy shares.
    Dubai's index rose 0.6% after registering a
one-month high percentage gain in the last session. Banks were
the biggest boost with a 1.2% rise in Dubai Islamic Bank
 and a 0.9% gain in Emirates NBD. 
    The emirate's largest lender Emirates NBD surged 4.1% on
Sunday after the bank received regulatory approval to buy shares
in Turkey's Denizbank from Russia's Sberbank.
    Kuwait's index was up 0.2%, registering its third
consecutive gain.
    Last week, index compiler MSCI said it would upgrade Kuwaiti
equities to its main emerging markets index in 2020, a move that
could trigger billions of dollars of inflows from passive
    Middle Eastern funds plan to continue increasing their
investments in Kuwait over the next three months, a Reuters poll
    The Abu Dhabi index traded flat with market
heavyweight First Abu Dhabi Bank shedding 0.3%.
    The Egyptian stock exchange was closed for a holiday.

($1 = 3.7502 riyals)
 SAUDI       The index         rose 0.4% to 8,853 points
 ABU DHABI   The index        traded flat at 4,979 points
 DUBAI       The index          rose 0.6% to 2,674 points
 QATAR       The index        was up 1% at 10,560 points
 BAHRAIN     The index        was up 0.3% at 1,476 points
 OMAN        The index        fell 0.2% to 3,876 points
 KUWAIT      The index        rose 0.2% to 6,392 points
 (Reporting by Shakeel Ahmad in Bengaluru; ; editing by John
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