* Some Saudi cement companies gain on hopes for end to Yemen war
* Foreigners were net sellers of Saudi stocks again last week
* Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank surges as it opens to foreigners
* Nasdaq Dubai-listed DP World gains after chairman’s comments
* Egypt’s Pioneers Holding up after offer for Electro Cable
By Abinaya Vijayaraghavan and shakeel ahmad
Nov 19 (Reuters) - Banks helped Saudi Arabia’s stock market off a one-month low on Monday while other Gulf markets also gained.
The Saudi index rose 0.8 percent, with the kingdom’s largest lender National Commercial Bank climbing by 2 percent. Saudi Steel Pipes, meanwhile, gained 3.5 percent after it appointed a new chief executive.
Some cement stocks, especially those in the south of the country near Yemen, rose again on hopes that a possible end to the Yemen war could boost demand for reconstruction. Houthi rebels in Yemen said on Monday that they were halting drone and missile attacks on Saudi Arabia and were ready for a broader ceasefire.
Najran Cement jumped 5.7 percent. But high geopolitical tensions in the Gulf make it unclear whether a permanent resolution to the conflict is possible.
Exchange data on Sunday showed qualified foreign investors were net sellers of Saudi stocks to the tune of $100 million last week, their sixth straight week of net sales. Sentiment has been hurt by the drop in oil prices as well as concern over Saudi relations with foreign governments after the killing of dissident Jamal Khashoggi.
Qatar’s index rose 1 percent as Industries Qatar gained 2.2 percent and Qatar National Bank firmed by 1.9 percent. But Qatar Fuel lost 4.3 percent and was the biggest drag on the index.
Egypt’s blue-chip index lost 0.5 percent after rising sharply in the previous two sessions. Eastern Co slipped 3.2 percent and Commercial International Bank was down 0.9 percent.
El Sewedy Electric dropped 2 percent after its third-quarter profit attributable to shareholders fell by more than 27 percent.
Pioneers Holding, however, registered a 6.6 percent jump, continuing its rise after Sunday’s announcement that it had made a compulsory offer to acquire all of Electro Cable Egypt for 1.35 Egyptian pounds per share. Electro Cable rose 2.3 percent to 1.24 pounds.
Edita Food Industries and Porto Group last traded 10 percent higher.
The Abu Dhabi index rose 0.5 percent, with Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank up 4.9 percent. A previously announced decision to let foreigners own up to 25 percent of its shares took effect on Monday. Previously, only local citizens could own the stock. Trading volume in ADIB was the second highest since 2008.
In Dubai, the index edged up by 0.2 percent as DAMAC Properties rose 1.9 percent and Dar Al Takaful added 4.3 percent.
But Dubai Investments fell 3.3 percent in its fourth straight session of declines after MSCI decided to move the stock to its UAE small-cap index from its United Arab Emirates standard index.
Nasdaq Dubai-listed DP World added 2.8 percent. The company’s chairman told Reuters on Sunday that international trade tensions would make 2019 challenging but not unmanageable. The global ports operator is taking measures to reduce costs, he added. SAUDI ARABIA * The index rose 0.8 percent to 7,560 points.
DUBAI * The index inched up 0.2 percent to 2,784 points QATAR * The index was up 1.0 percent at 10,398 points. ABU DHABI * The index added 0.5 percent at 5,080 points EGYPT * The index fell 0.5 percent to 13,906 points. KUWAIT * The index was up 0.1 percent at 5,289 points.
BAHRAIN * The index was down 0.3 percent at 1,306 points. OMAN * The index was flat at 4,453 points.
Editing by Andrew Torchia Editing by David Goodman