Saudi gains ahead of OPEC+ meet as oil prices climb
Saudi Arabia's stock market ended higher on Sunday as oil prices rose ahead of Monday's OPEC+ meeting, while Qatar continued its down trend as inflation worries and the tightening U.S. Federal Reserve policy outlook sapped investors' risk appetite.
Oil, a key driver for Gulf markets, rose 66 cents to $93.02 a barrel on Friday on expectations that the meeting of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and other major producers including Russia will discuss output cuts.
Saudi Arabia's benchmark index (.TASI) edged up 0.4%, with Riyad Bank (1010.SE) increasing 3.3% while oil behemoth Saudi Aramco (2222.SE) was up 1.5% at 37.65 riyals ($10.02).
Among other stocks, Arabian Contracting Services Company (4071.SE) gained 0.6% after its board proposed a 1.90 riyals per share half yearly dividend.
In Qatar, the index (.QSI) slipped 0.3%, extending the losses for six straight sessions, as gains in industrial stocks were offset by losses in the financial sectors with commercial Bank (COMB.QA) decreasing 1.8%.
Industries Qatar (IQCD.QA) was up 1%.
Separately, Qatar's foreign minister said in remarks cited by Al Jazeera TV on Saturday that his government will step up investments in the gas sector.
Egypt's blue-chip index (.EGX30) ended 0.6% higher as the country's lone cigarette maker, Eastern Company (EAST.CA), jumped 3%, after it raised prices for its Local Cigarettes Brands effective Sept. 4.