Most Middle Eastern stock markets fell yesterday with Saudi Arabia pulling further away from a major resistance level, although a surge by fuel distributor Adnoc Distribution buoyed Abu Dhabi.
The Saudi index slipped 0.3% to 7,513 points, retreating from the July peak of 7,586 points.
Dairy company Almarai dropped 1.2% after reporting fourth-quarter net profit of 513mn riyals ($137mn), down from 536mn riyals a year ago and below forecasts of 549mn riyals by SICO Bahrain and 531mn riyals by NCB Capital.
It blamed a 2.6% decline in revenue on the loss of sales to Gulf and export countries, in an apparent reference to the blockade on Qatar.
Savola, Saudi Arabia’s largest food producer and a major shareholder in Almarai, slid 2.2%.
Saudia Dairy and Foodstuff Co fell 1.6% after reporting a 14% decline in quarterly profit, as sales shrank slightly.
In Dubai, the index fell 0.5% to 3,512 points. as most property developers weakened, with Damac down 1.7%.
Union Properties, however, edged up 0.4% after saying it had sold its entire stake in district cooling firm Emicool to Dubai Investments, already the owner of the other 50%, for 500mn dirhams ($136mn). Dubai Investments edged down 0.4%.
Abu Dhabi’s index rose 0.2% to 4,636 points on the back of a 3% gain by Adnoc Distribution to 2.73 dirhams. On Thursday, Goldman Sachs initiated the stock with a “buy” rating and a 12-month price target of 3.31 dirhams.
Egypt’s index fell 0.5% to 15,340 points, but Orascom Development surged 3% after the board proposed a share split that would change the par value of the stock to 1 Egyptian pound from 5 pounds.
Elsewhere in the Gulf, the Kuwait index dropped 0.3% to 6,620 points, the Bahrain index rose 0.2% to 1,336 points and the Oman index fell 0.9% to 4,979 points.
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