Saudi bourse rebounds; Aramco’s profit soars 82% in Q1


An investor walks through the Dubai Financial Market after Joe Biden won the U.S. presidency, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates November 8, 2020. REUTERS/Christopher Pike/File Photo

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May 15 (Reuters) – Saudi Arabia’s stock market rebounded on Sunday, after a sharp decline in the previous session, while the Qatari index extended losses.

Most Gulf stock markets lost ground last week reflecting investors’ anxiety about fast-rising inflation that will drive a sharp rise in interest rates and put global economy growth at risk.

Saudi Arabia’s benchmark index (.TASI) gained 2.5%, with Al Rajhi Bank (1120.SE) advancing 3.6%, while oil group Saudi Aramco (2222.SE) finished 4.2% higher after reporting an almost 82% surge in first-quarter net profit.

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Aramco, which is on a par with Apple Inc (AAPL.O) as the world’s most valuable company, reported net income of $39.5 billion for the quarter to March 31 from $21.7 billion a year earlier. read more

Oil prices, a key catalyst for the Gulf’s financial markets, rose about 4% on Friday as U.S. gasoline prices jumped to a record high, China looked ready to ease pandemic restrictions and investors worried supplies will tighten if the European Union bans Russian oil. read more

In Qatar, the index (.QSI) dropped more than 2% as most of the stocks on the index were in negative territory, including Masraf Al Rayan (MARK.QA).

Outside the Gulf, Egypt’s blue-chip index (.EGX30) fell 1.4%, with Commercial International Bank (COMI.CA) losing 1.4%.

The Egyptian market remains exposed to the changing sentiment (in global financial markets) and could continue seeing a volatile performance, said Fadi Reyad, market analyst at

“The change in expectations comes on top of the impact the country is witnessing from the conflict in Ukraine.”

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Reporting by Ateeq Shariff in Bengaluru. Editing by Jane Merriman

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