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Saudi Bourse Gains On Rising Oil Prices

PARIS, France - - Saudi Arabia's stock market ended higher on Sunday in response to Friday's sharp rise in oil prices, while the Egyptian index slipped into negative territory following a recent rally.

Crude prices - a key driver of the Gulf's financial markets - settled up by more than 5% on Friday amid uncertainty around future interest rate hikes by the U.S. Federal Reserve, while a looming EU ban on Russian oil and the possibility of China easing some COVID restrictions supported markets.

The benchmark index (TASI) in Saudi Arabia gained 0.7%, led by a 1.6% jump in oil giant Saudi Aramco and a 0.5% increase in Al Rajhi Bank.

The Kingdom is considering setting up a new metals and mining stock exchange index as it looks to expand its resources sector to diversify away from hydrocarbons, a senior government official said on Friday.

Saudi Arabian Mining Company was up 1.5%.

In Qatar, the index (QSI) finished 0.8% higher, with Qatar National Bank, the Gulf's biggest lender, rising 1.9%.

The Qatari bourses recorded an increase with natural gas prices continuing their rebound, Daniel Takieddine, CEO MENA at BDSwiss.

''Demand for the commodity could pick up if temperatures decline with winter approaching, supporting the stock market at the same time''.

On Friday, ratings agency S&P raised Qatar's long - term sovereign credit rating to ''AA'' from ''AA''-, citing improvements in the government's fiscal position.

Outside the Gulf, Egypt's blue-chip index (EGX30) lost 0.7%, hit by a 0.3% fall in Commercial International Bank, despite reporting an increase in quarterly profit.



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