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Financials

MIDEAST STOCKS-Gulf stocks end mixed, Saudi edges up ahead of OPEC+ meet

    * Nine of 11 Saudi Arabian banks gain
    * Qatar sells $10 bln bonds in multi-tranches
    * Egypt extends night-time curfew by 15 days

    By Ateeq Shariff
    April 8 (Reuters) - Stock markets in the United Arab
Emirates backtracked from two sessions of gains on Wednesday as
investors fled risk on coronavirus fears, while Saudi equities
edged up ahead of an OPEC+ meeting on output cuts.
    Dubai's main share index dropped 1%, with blue chip
developer Emaar Properties declining 2.6% and Dubai
Islamic Bank losing 1.9%. 
    In Abu Dhabi, the index lost 1.6%. First Abu Dhabi
Bank slid 2.9%, while Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank
 was down 1.5%.
    Ratings agency Moody's had said on Tuesday a $70 billion UAE
stimulus package will support bank liquidity and limit likely
asset deterioration due to the coronavirus outbreak, but will
increase the potential for problem loans.
    As of April 7, the UAE had registered a total of 2,359
cases. The pandemic has forced vital sectors of its economy,
such as tourism and transport, to a near standstill.
    Qatar's index added 0.6%, helped by a 0.6% rise in
Qatar Fuel Co and a 1.2% gain in Qatar International
Islamic Bank.
    Qatar sold $10 billion in bonds in tranches of 5, 10, and 30
years on Tuesday, the first Gulf state to raise cash in the debt
markets against a backdrop of low oil prices and market
uncertainty caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
    Saudi Arabia's benchmark index ended up 0.2% in
choppy trade, with banking and petrochemical shares moving
sideways.
    Samba Financial Group advanced 4.6%, while Banque
Saudi Fransi added 3.5%.
    Major oil producers including Saudi Arabia and Russia are
likely to agree to cut production at a Thursday meeting, but
only if the United States joins the effort, three OPEC+ sources
told Reuters on Monday.
    Outside the Gulf, Egypt's blue-chip index gained
2%, extending gains for a third session, as Commercial
International Bank leapt 5.1%.
    Egypt will extend a nationwide night-time curfew by 15 days
until April 23 to counter the coronavirus spread, Prime Minister
Mostafa Madbouly said on Wednesday.
    
 SAUDI ARABIA          was up 0.2% to 6,999 points
 ABU DHABI            lost 1.6% to 3,867 points
 DUBAI                  fell 1% to 1,767 points
 QATAR                added 0.6% to 9,030 points
 EGYPT                  rose 2% to 10,096 points
 BAHRAIN              lost 0.8% to 1,303 points
 OMAN                 gained 1.7% to 3,455 points
 KUWAIT               slipped 0.2% to 5,083 points
 
 (Reporting by Ateeq Shariff in Bengaluru
Editing by David Holmes)
  
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