* Profits taken in Egyptian financials, property stocks
* Madinet Nasr falls back after leap on merger talks
* Saudi stocks had slid on Wednesday after Trump tweet
* Rally in Dubai’s DXB Entertainments fizzles out
* Abu Dhabi, Qatar weighed down by financials
By Saeed Azhar
DUBAI, April 12 (Reuters) - Most Gulf stock markets closed lower on Thursday as the threat of U.S. military action in Syria kept investors on the sidelines, but the Saudi Arabian market stabilised after a sell-off on the previous day.
In Egypt, the index fell 1.8 percent as investors booked profits, overwhelming a 1.4 percent gain on Wednesday. Banking and property stocks were hit hard with Commercial International Bank falling 3.3 percent.
Property firm Madinet Nasr for Housing and Development dropped 6.5 percent after soaring on Wednesday on news that it would discuss a possible merger with SODIC. SODIC rose a further 1.8 percent.
Saudi Arabia’s index was up 0.3 percent, regaining some strength after Wednesday’s 1.9 percent slide. The index is still up 8 percent this year on fund flows that occurred before index compiler FTSE Russell announced in late March that it would upgrade Riyadh to emerging-market status.
“One has to remember that the Saudi market’s recent rally has been mainly flow-driven, so investors will be tempted to book profits in the short term,” said Nishit Lakhotia, head of research at SICO.
Al Rajhi Bank ended 0.9 percent higher, but many other banking shares ended lower with Saudi British Bank falling 2.6 percent.
Retailer Jarir Marketing edged down 0.1 percent, closing well off the day’s lows, after reporting a fall in first-quarter estimated net profit to 219.1 million riyals ($58.4 million), in line with analysts’ estimates.
Dubai’s index closed 1.2 percent lower, weighed down by property stocks. Emaar Properties, the largest property developer, dropped 2.0 percent.
Amusement park operator DXB Entertainments rose early after it said first-quarter visits totalled a record 851,000, up 45 percent from a year earlier. But the rally ran out of steam and the stock closed 1.6 percent lower.
The Abu Dhabi index slipped 0.8 percent, hit by weak financial and property stocks. Aldar Properties fell 1.9 percent.
Qatar’s index lost 1.1 percent, hurt by banking stocks with Commercial Bank tumbling 4.3 percent. But the index still rose 1.4 percent over the week after several blue-chip firms raised foreign ownership limits, which promises to increase their weights in emerging market indexes.
SAUDI ARABIA * The index was up 0.3 percent to 7,824 points.
DUBAI * The index was down 1.2 percent to 3,094 points.
ABU DHABI * The index lost 0.8 percent to 4,653 points.
QATAR * The index fell 1.1 percent to 8,918 points.
EGYPT * The index dropped 1.8 percent to 17,616 points.
KUWAIT * The index fell 1.0 percent to 4,766 points.
BAHRAIN * The index edged up 0.2 percent to 1,291 points.
OMAN * The index edged down 0.3 percent to 4,777 points. (Editing by Andrew Torchia, Larry King)