|12-21-2014, 11:54 AM||#1|
Gulf bourses maintain winning course, Egypt jumps on rating upgrade
Saudi Arabia’s stock market edged higher on Sunday, extending last week’s gains as investors looked forward for the government’s 2015 budget on Monday, which is expected to show strong fiscal spending on development projects.
The main index, the Tadawul All Share Index gained 1.5% in early trade on Sunday, adding to the 8.9% rise on Thursday. The index eased off early highs, having gained nearly 5% at one stage.
Developer Dar Al Arkan, which is the most likely to benefit from higher state spending on Saudi Arabia’s housing sector, was the most actively traded share, and gained 5%.
Ma’aden and petrochemicals producer Saudi Kayan gained 5% and 6% respectively.
Markets received a massive boost on Wednesday after Saudi Finance Minister Ibrahim Alassaf annouced that the government will sustain heavy spending in its 2015 budget, mainly for social benefits and development projects.
Other Gulf bourses were notably higher on Sunday as well. Dubai surged 10% after Thursday’s 13% jump. Abu Dhabi gained 3.6%.
Qatar caught the regional rebound after it was closed on Thursday due to a national holiday, rising 8%.
Egypt gained nearly 4% after Fitch Ratings upgraded its debt rating to B in the weekend, citing the government’s policies to fuel growth and reduce debt.
Brent crude oil prices steadied above the $60-a-barrel mark last week, but traders are not certain that a floor was set. This means any renewed decline would have a negative reaction on the region’s sentiment and could hurt stock markets.
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