Saudi shares drop after PMI points to slowdown
November 03 2015 09:12 PM
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The shadows of investors are seen cast on a screen as they monitor stock prices at the FALCOM investment bank in Riyadh. The Saudi stock index sank 1.6% yesterday to 6,955 points, near technical support at its August low of 6,921 points.

Reuters/Dubai



Saudi Arabia’s stock market fell sharply yesterday after data pointed to an economic slowdown due to low oil prices.
Other major Middle Eastern markets fared better, with second-tier stocks favoured by speculators lifting Dubai.
The seasonally adjusted Emirates NBD Saudi Arabia Purchasing Managers’ Index, an indicator of growth in the non-oil private sector, fell last month to 55.7 - its lowest since the survey began in August 2009 - from 56.5 in September.
Meanwhile the cost of insuring Saudi Arabia’s sovereign debt against default edged up to its highest level since June 2009, following a Standard & Poor’s downgrade of the kingdom’s debt rating on Friday.
The Saudi stock index sank 1.6% yesterday to 6,955 points, near technical support at its August low of 6,921 points. Turnover rose as the market dropped in a negative technical sign.
Petrochemical blue chip Saudi Basic Industries slid 2.7% and industrial zone developer Emaar Economic City dropped by the same amount.
Kingdom Holding fell 2.3% after saying it expected no financial impact from its sale of a 29.9% stake in media firm Saudi Research and Marketing Group (SRMG), which climbed 9.9% after a 7.2% gain on Monday.
Saudi Printing and Packaging Co also surged, adding 9.9% after a 9.8% leap on Monday. It has been rising in heavy trade since shortly after it reported quarterly earnings on Oct 20.
Elsewhere in the Gulf, Dubai’s index rose 0.8%, though activity focused on low-priced speculative shares; HITS Telecom was the most active stock, climbing 2.4%.
Du, the UAE’s second biggest telecoms operator, closed 1.0% higher despite missing estimates with a 12.3% fall in third-quarter net profit to 489.8mn dirhams ($133.4mn). Two analysts polled by Reuters had on average forecast 521.3mn dirhams.
Abu Dhabi gained 0.5% as Aldar Properties surged 4.6%.
Qatar’s index fell 0.3% as Industries Qatar slipped 0.4%. In a sign of tightening banking liquidity in Qatar, the central bank halved the size of a planned Treasury bill sale yesterday and yields rose sharply from last month’s auction.
Egypt’s index rose in early trade but closed 0.02% lower after a disappointing Purchasing Managers’ Index; the Egyptian PMI fell to an eight-month low of 47.2 in October from 50.2 in September, dropping below the 50-point mark that separates growth from contraction.
Elsewhere in the Gulf, Kuwait’s index edged up 0.2% to 5,794 points, Oman’s index edged up 0.2% to 5,948 points, while Bahrain’s index edged down 0.1% to 1,260 points.



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