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MidEast Stocks Narrowly Mixed In Low Volume as Many Markets Close for Holiday

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Middle East shares were narrowly mixed but volume was low with markets in the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait and Egypt closed for public holidays.

Saudi Arabia’s index firmed with investors hopeful the country’s anti-corruption crackdown is fading. A Reuters poll of leading Middle East fund managers were on balance positive about the country and almost half plan to raise their allocations to Saudi stocks in the next three months and none to reduce.

Qatar’s index slipped with index compiler MSCI’s planning to announce early next week whether it will switch to using offshore currency rates to value Qatari equities – a step that could potentially decrease their weightings in MSCI’s emerging market index, Reuters said.

In company news, Retailer United Electronics said it launched a partnership with online retailer to be its exclusive supplier of home and electronic appliances in Saudi Arabia.

Qatar Gas Transport (Nakilat) had its ratings put on Rating Watch Positive by credit rating agency Fitch.

Saudi Arabia’s main index edged up 0.5% to 7,004 points, Qatar fell 0.9% to 7,714 points and Oman firmed 0.06% to 5,110 points.

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