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Middle East Stocks Mostly Rise, Saudi And Qatar Optimism Linked to MSCI

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MidEast shares mostly rose, with Saudi and Qatar's gains pinned to optimism related to MSCI inclusion.

Investors are snapping up Saudi stocks on hopes MSCI will upgrade Riyadh to emerging market status. Meanwhile, Qatari blue-chips continue to march higher after MSCI said last month it would raise the weightings of top Qatari companies after they increased their foreign ownership ceilings to 49% from 25%.

Egypt continues to slip amid uncertainty over the public response to imminent energy subsidy cuts. Egypt is expected to make deep cuts to fuel and electricity subsidies in the financial year starting in July, part of reforms tied to a three-year $12 billion IMF loan programme the country hopes will draw back investors that fled after its 2011 uprising.

Saudi Arabia's main index rose 0.9% to 8,407 points, Dubai added 0.3% to 3,045 points, Abu Dhabi advanced 0.9% to 4,617 points, Qatar rallied 2.1% to 9,311 points, Kuwait firmed 0.1% to 4,725 points, Bahrain edged up 0.2% at 1,268 points, Oman inched up 0.1% to 4,592 points and Egypt slid 2.3% to 16,022 points.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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