MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi Arabia stabilises, Egypt edges up
Saudi Stock Market - Getty Images
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DUBAI: Saudi Arabia’s stock market stabilised on Wednesday, supported by firmer petrochemical shares after oil prices stopped falling, while Egypt’s bourse edged up in response to an improved global market environment.

The Saudi stock index was up 0.2 percent in modest turnover after 45 minutes of trade with Saudi Basic Industries adding 0.3 percent.

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It and other petrochemical stocks had sagged on Tuesday because of weak oil prices, but on Wednesday, oil was slightly above where it was on Tuesday afternoon in the Gulf, with Brent crude just above $48 a barrel.

However, miner Ma’aden remained soft after this week’s global sell-off in commodity-related shares; it dropped a further 1.0 percent.

Egypt’s index climbed 0.5 percent after Asian and European bourses rose. Among active stocks, investment firm Qalaa Holdings added 3.2 percent after a local newspaper reported it was expected to finalise the sale of its stake in Misr Glass Manufacturing within a few weeks, part of a series of asset disposals. Qalaa had earlier said the sale was expected to close in the second quarter of this year.

North Africa Co for Real Estate Investment added 6.3 percent in unusually active trade.

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