Middle East Stocks Mixed, Gulf Markets Supported by Jump in Brent Crude to Highest Since Dec 2014

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MidEast shares were mixed, with Gulf markets finding support from a Brent crude move above $70 a barrel for the first time since December 2014.

Meanwhile, Qatari shares rebounded from losses made in the previous session after the United Arab Emirates said Qatari fighter jets twice intercepted Emirati civilian aircraft during routine flights to Bahrain. Qatar denied the action but nervousness lingered and had sparked a sharp sell off late in the prior session.

In company news, Emirates NBD reported a 17.2% year-on-year rise in Q4 net profit, in line with analysts' forecasts.

Al Izz Islamic Bank said its net loss for last year narrowed while net operating income gained 38%.

Galfar Engineering's annual net loss narrowed 45%.

Gulf International Chemicals said annual net profit roughly halved, as revenues fell.

Saudi Arabia's main index added 0.7% to 7,532 points, Dubai rose 0.9% to 3,526 points, Abu Dhabi firmed 0.3% to 4,615 points, Qatar jumped 2.6% to 9,178 points, Egypt slipped 0.3% to 15,089 points, Kuwait dipped 0.03% to 6,625 points, Bahrain shed 0.2% to 1,321 points and Oman fell 0.6% to 5,040 points.

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