Mideast Stocks: Gulf bourses mixed in early trade

SectorFinancial Markets

Stock markets in the Gulf were mixed early on Sunday, with bourses in the United Arab Emirates supported by corporate earnings reports.

Saudi Arabia’s benchmark index was down 0.4%, extending losses from the previous session.

On Wednesday, the Saudi index registered sharp gains after Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman said the kingdom had no plans to introduce income tax and a decision last July to triple value-added tax (VAT) to 15% was temporary.

The country tripled VAT to offset the impact of lower oil revenue on state finances, a move that shocked citizens and businesses expecting more support from the government during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Elsewhere, Riyad Bank declined 1.5% following a drop in quarterly earnings. 

Dubai’s main share index gained 0.3%, with sharia-compliant lender Dubai Islamic Bank adding 0.7%, while budget airline Air Arabia, which resumed flights to Moscow on May 1, rose 2.3%.

Among others, Dubai Investments, the diversified investment group, climbed 1.3% after the company reported a net profit of...read more...