DUBAI Oct 19 Saudi Basic Industries
helped lift Riyadh's stock market early on Wednesday after it
reported a third-quarter net profit at the top end of forecasts,
but a loss at Qatar's third- largest bank dragged that market
Riyadh's stock index was up 0.4 percent after half
an hour of trade.
SABIC, the Gulf's largest petrochemical producer, climbed
1.5 percent after posting a net profit of 5.22 billion riyals
($1.39 billion) in the three months to Sept. 30, down 6.8
percent from a year ago. Analysts polled by Reuters had on
average predicted 5.05 billion riyals.
The company attributed the profit fall to lower average
sales prices and a reduction in the quantity of products sold,
outweighing benefits gained from a decrease in costs.
Roughly two-thirds of Saudi petrochemical producers have now
reported third-quarter earnings, with generally weak results.
Nama Chemicals, a mid-sized producer, said it made a
wider loss in the third quarter of 32.6 million riyals versus a
loss of 24.0 million riyals in the same period of 2015. Its
shares were down 1.1 percent.
Emaar the Economic City, developer of an
industrial city near Jeddah, dropped 1.6 percent after reporting
a third-quarter net loss of 81 million riyals versus a profit of
8 million riyals a year ago.
Middle East Healthcare Co jumped 6.3 percent after
its quarterly net income rose 1.4 percent to 92 million riyals.
In Qatar, the index pulled back 0.6 percent as
Commercial Bank of Qatar slipped 4.6 percent. The bank
made a net attributable loss of 1.04 million riyals ($285,612)
in the third quarter versus a profit of 275.9 million riyals a
year earlier; analysts polled by Reuters had forecast a profit
of 281.7 million riyals.
The bank cited provisions for non-performing loans, after
former Australia and New Zealand Banking Group banker Joseph
Abraham was appointed chief executive in July.
Medicare Group sank 2.9 percent after reporting an
85 percent drop in third-quarter net profit to 4.8 million
Qatar Insurance was down 1.3 percent on a 6
percent fall in third-quarter profit to 108.8 million riyals,
considerably below EFG Hermes' forecast of 312 million riyals.
In Dubai, the index was down 0.2 percent in quiet
trade as no major companies posted fresh results. Dubai
Investment lost 1.0 percent.
(Reporting by Celine Aswad; Editing by Andrew Torchia)