MIDEAST STOCKS-Strong oil boosts Gulf, Global Telecom lifts Egypt
Traders work at the Egyptian stock exchange in Cairo, Egypt, December 3, 2015. REUTERS/Mohamed Abd El Ghany
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DUBAI: Gulf stock markets rose on Thursday after Brent crude oil futures surged nearly 5 percent on Wednesday to near their highest levels this year, while strong earnings from Global Telecom helped to lift Egypt.

The Saudi stock index gained 0.6 percent but trading volume fell. Petrochemical stocks were strong with Saudi Basic Industries up 1.5 percent.

Najran Cement climbed 4.3 percent in its heaviest trade since July 2012 after it said it planned to pay a 0.60 riyal per share dividend for the first half of 2016.

But Amana Insurance tumbled 8.0 percent after it reported a net operating deficit of 4.2 million riyals ($1.1 million) for the month of April.

Dubai’s index gained 0.5 percent with blue chip Emaar Properties adding 1.8 percent. Air Arabia was up 0.8 percent; it has been firm since it reported early this week a 42.2 percent jump in first-quarter net profit.

Abu Dhabi’s index edged up 0.04 percent. Speculators focused on International Fish Farming, which soared in early trade but closed 0.6 percent lower in its heaviest volume since June 2014.

Qatar climbed 0.5 percent as drilling rig provider Gulf International Services surged 2.2 percent.

Egypt’s index edged up 0.2 percent after Global Telecom swung to a first-quarter net profit of $87.5 million from a loss of $82.3 million a year earlier. The stock gained 1.9 percent.

But Edita Food Industries sank 3.9 percent after it reported a first-quarter net profit of 39.17 million Egyptian pounds ($4.41 million), down from 81.30 million pounds a year earlier.

Real estate firm Talaat Mostafa fell 1.6 percent after quarterly profit rose to 199.39 million Egyptian pounds from 186.43 million pounds.

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