December 26, 2018 / 4:54 AM / in 3 months

MIDEAST - Factors to watch - December 26

DUBAI, Dec 26 (Reuters) - Here are some factors that may affect Middle East stock markets on Wednesday. Reuters has not verified the press reports and does not vouch for their accuracy.

INTERNATIONAL/REGIONAL

* GLOBAL MARKETS-Stocks under a cloud as US political tumult adds to growth anxiety

* MIDEAST STOCKS-Global market woes hurt Gulf, merger talk sends Riyad Bank to 4-year high

* U.S. oil prices rebound after tumbling to lowest since June 2017 on economy fears

* PRECIOUS-Gold holds near six-month peak on weak risk appetite

* Iranian president presents budget, says U.S. sanctions to hit growth

* Syria state media says Israeli planes attack targets near Damascus

* Several dead in suicide attack on Libyan foreign ministry

* Russia’s RDIF considers investing in Arctic LNG 2 with Saudi Aramco - RIA

* Putin has no plans to contact Saudi Arabia over weak oil prices - Kremlin

EGYPT

* POLL-Egypt seen holding key interest rates as inflation retreats

* EGYTRANS Considering To Invest In Rail Goods Transport

SAUDI ARABIA

* Saudi Riyad bank shares rally after it begins merger talks with NCB

* Saudi Electricity Obtains 2.4 Bln Riyals Bilateral Facility

UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

* Invest Bank GM to meet on Dec 29 to approve increase investment by Government of Sharjah

* Drake and Scull board to replace Abdulla Atatreh as chairman

* UAE’s Empower settles $728 mln loan in full

* Dana Gas Says Goldilocks Investment Increases Stake To 5.16 Pct

KUWAIT

* Kuwait light crude output expected to rise to 250,000 bpd in 3 years- KUNA

* Oil minister says Kuwait committed to recent OPEC, non-OPEC agreement- KUNA

BAHRAIN

* Bahrain oil products to be excluded from VAT implementation (Reporting By Dubai newsroom)

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