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MIDEAST STOCKS-Qatar may rebound, Omantel interest may boost Kuwait's Zain
October 9, 2017 / 5:57 AM / 10 days ago

MIDEAST STOCKS-Qatar may rebound, Omantel interest may boost Kuwait's Zain

DUBAI, Oct 9 (Reuters) - Most stock markets in the Gulf look set to consolidate on Monday but Qatar could rebound after appearing to find at least a short-term floor on Sunday.

Qatar’s index, which had tumbled as much as 1.6 percent during the day on Sunday to just above 8,000 points, rebounded sharply towards the close and finished 0.1 percent higher.

That suggested a technical rebound might be starting, although sentiment is likely to remain very cautious while the sanctions by four Arab states continue to weigh on the economy.

The global market environment is broadly neutral, with Brent oil at $55.75 a barrel and most Asian bourses barely changed, although China is up strongly, partly in a delayed reaction to a targeted monetary easing by the country’s central bank announced a week ago.

Abu Dhabi-listed Sudatel Telecom and Dubai-listed Al Salam Bank Sudan may continue to attract interest. Both stocks soared 15 percent on Sunday after the United States lifted sanctions on Sudan.

Confirming market rumours, Omantel said it had signed a non-binding letter of intent with a vehicle of Kuwait’s Al Kharafi family to buy a further 12 percent telecommunications firm Zain.

The possible price was not specified, but Omantel shares rose after it announced its purchase of 9.84 percent of Zain in early August for 0.60 dinar per share, well above the stock’s market price of 0.471 dinar at the time.

After being suspended on Sunday, Zain shares will resume trading on Monday. In a report, Arqaam Capital said the sale of the Kharafis’ stake was unlikely to boost Zain’s share price, as another deal at a substantial premium to the market was unlikely. Arqaam maintained a “hold” recommendation for Zain shares with a 0.50 dinar target price. (Reporting By Aziz El Yaakoubi; Editing by Andrew)

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