Saudi stocks survive early sell-off; Gulf equities drop
The death of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi in a fight at the country's consulate in Istanbul and uncertainty around the reaction from different world leaders continued to weigh on GCC equities on Sunday as almost all indices ended in the red.
The Saudi index plunged as much as 3.5 per cent in the early session before recovering to close slightly higher on Sunday.
Both Dubai and Abu Dhabi indices also opened the week on a negative note as both lost nearly one per cent. The Dubai Financial Market fell 0.82 per cent to 2,735 points while the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange lost 0.92 per cent to end the day at 4,943 points.
Jameel Ahmad, global head of currency strategy and market research, FXTM, said the under performance seen in the Tadawul Index of Saudi Arabia at the beginning of the week is a general reflection of how investors have reacted to the outcome of the investigation.
"There is still a layer of investor uncertainty around the reaction from different world leaders that is encouraging the mixed performance in the Saudi Index, and it wouldn't be a surprise if this momentum continues to show the same form until the conclusion of the upcoming Saudi Investment Summit," Ahmad said.
The Saudi market, according to equity market analysts, witnessed selling by retail and institutional investors but received buying support from state-back Saudi funds, which helped it to end in the green.
Tadawul has lost nearly 4 per cent since October due to worries that the Khashoggi case could trigger US sanctions and shrink inflows of foreign investment. The Qatar index finished 0.4 per cent down. The Kuwait index lost 0.1 per cent to 5,169 points while the Bahrain index fell 0.1 per cent to 1,322 points.
Elsewhere in the region, Egypt's blue-chip index fell 0.9 per cent after the government signalled a delay to its public share sale programme.
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