MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi shares end higher as banks jump; Dubai falls over 1%

    * Sabic surges after JV commences ethylene expansion project
    * Emirates NBD sees its biggest fall in nearly 8 months
    * Deyaar tumbles after reporting a fall in Q3 profit
    * Qatar's Baladna to raise 1.43 bln riyals in IPO

    By Shamsuddin Mohd
    Oct 17 (Reuters) - Saudi Arabian shares closed higher for a
second straight session on Thursday as banks rallied, while
Dubai was dragged down by its top lender Emirates NBD.
    Saudi's benchmark index rose 1.6%, with Al Rajhi
Bank and Banque Saudi Fransi advancing 3.1%.
and 6.6%, respectively.
    The world's fourth-biggest petrochemical firm, Saudi Basic
Industries, soared 4% after its joint-venture with
China's SINOPEC kicked off its ethylene expansion project on
Oct. 14.
    In Dubai, the index fell 1.6%. Emirates NBD
 saw its worst session in nearly eight months and
closed down 3.8%. 
    The bank's board approved a capital increase via a rights
issue of up to 6.45 billion dirhams ($1.76 billion), lower than
7.35 billion dirhams that the general assembly had decided in
February this year.
    Deyaar Development shed 5.6% after the developer
reported a sharp decline in its third-quarter profit compared
with the same quarter a year earlier.
    Qatar's index slipped 0.1% as banking and energy
stocks weighed. Qatar Fuel and Qatar Islamic Bank
 lost 1.3% and 0.7%, respectively.
    Separately, Qatari company Baladna, which has built a dairy
business in the desert following a trade embargo by Saudi Arabia
and its allies, will launch an initial public offering this
month that could raise 1.43 billion riyals ($392.86 million).

    Meanwhile, Abu Dhabi's index reversed its course to
close 0.1% higher, helped by a 1.4% rise in Aldar Properties
    On Wednesday, the realtor's unit issued a $500 million
sukuk, or Islamic bonds, and the transaction was six times
    Egypt's blue-chip index traded flat with country's
largest lender, Commercial International Bank,
dropping 1%, while developer Madinet Nasr ended 6%
 SAUDI ARABIA  The index         was up 1.6% at 7,636 
 ABU DHABI     The index        edged up 0.1% to 5,093 
 DUBAI         The index          was down 1.6% at 2,780 
 QATAR         The index        edged down 0.1% to 10,428 
 EGYPT         The index          was flat at 14,206 
 BAHRAIN       The index        was up 0.1% at 1,527 
 OMAN          The index        rose 0.1% to 4,005 
 KUWAIT        The index        was up 0.1% at 6,300
($1 = 3.6400 Qatar riyals)

 (Reporting by Shamsuddin Mohd in Bengaluru; editing by