October 19, 2017 / 5:27 AM / a year ago

MIDEAST STOCKS-Q3 profit rise at Riyad Bank could support Saudi bank stocks

DUBAI, Oct 19 (Reuters) - Saudi bank shares could be buoyed on Thursday by better than expected third-quarter earnings from Riyad Bank, the kingdom’s fourth-largest bank by assets.

Investors are awaiting results from Saudi Arabia’s other lenders after Riyad Bank reported a 47.7 percent rise in profit as income from investments and fees and commission rose.

The positive results follow Saudi’s Alinma Bank on Sunday beating analysts’ estimates with a 3 percent profit rise.

Qatar bank stocks will also be in focus after Qatar Islamic Bank (QIB), the Gulf state’s largest sharia-compliant lender by assets, reported a 10.9 percent jump in third-quarter net, in line with analysts’ forecasts.

Results on Thursday included Saudi Kayan Petrochemical Co. , which reported a 140.9 percent rise in third-quarter profit to 381.0 million riyals, and Saudi Automotive Services Co , which posted a 36.6 percent profit rise to 9.1 million riyals.

Asian stocks rose to near decade highs on Thursday, while oil prices were stable, supported by ongoing OPEC-led supply cuts. (Reporting by Tom Arnold; Editing by Saeed Azhar)

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