October 18, 2016 / 8:45 AM / in a year

MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi weighed down by weak Q3 earnings

DUBAI, Oct 18 (Reuters) - Several disappointing third-quarter results from large Saudi companies dragged on the kingdom’s stock index in morning trade on Tuesday, while other Gulf markets edged up in modest trade.

Riyadh’s index was down 0.8 percent after 70 minutes. Saudi Arabian Mining Co (Ma‘aden) fell 2.7 percent after it posted a 4.6 percent rise in third-quarter net profit to 83.6 million riyals ($22.3 million) but missed analysts’ average forecast of 122.7 million riyals.

National Industrialization Co (Tasnee) swung to a net profit of 122.2 million riyals from a loss of 296.3 million riyals in the prior-year period. But NCB Capital said the result was 18 percent below its expectation and the stock slumped 5.5 percent.

Saudi Fertilizer Co fell 5.3 percent after it posted a 68 percent decline in third-quarter net profit to 181.4 million riyals, missing analysts’ prediction of 249.2 million riyals.

Banking shares were mixed with Samba Financial Group gaining 2.1 percent after it reported a 2.2-percent drop in quarterly net profit, in line with analysts’ forecasts.

Al Rajhi Bank rose 1.0 percent after it reported a 16.7-percent rise in profit, meeting forecasts; it was the first major bank in Saudi Arabia to report higher profits for the third quarter.

Saudi Hollandi Bank recorded a 46.7 percent fall in profit to 262.8 million riyals; analysts had forecast 506.4 million riyals. Its shares were down 4.5 percent.

The first telecommunications operator to report third-quarter earnings, Zain Saudi, dropped 3.6 percent after it reported a third-quarter loss of 267 million riyals. That was in line with expectations but quarterly revenue was down 7 percent.

Elsewhere, Dubai’s index rose 0.5 percent in modest trade with attention focused on small and mid-sized shares. Builder Arabtec and Union Properties were each up 1.5 percent.

In Abu Dhabi, Union National Bank, the only major bank to have reported third-quarter earnings so far in the emirate, was flat. It posted a 15 percent drop in net profit to 410 million dirhams ($111.6 million); analysts had forecast 456.7 million dirhams. (Reporting by Celine Aswad; Editing by Andrew Torchia and Andrew Heavens)

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