Gulf shares make a comeback after massive losses

DUBAI (AFP) – Stock markets in the energy-rich Gulf states rebounded yesterday, after huge losses in the previous session driven by fears over the impact of the coronavirus which has sent oil prices below USD50 a barrel.

Kuwait Boursa, which suspended trading on Sunday after shedding over 10 per cent, led the rally with its premier shares index soaring some 7.0 per cent and the All-Shares index surging around 5.0 per cent.

Saudi Arabia’s Tadawul market gained 2.3 per cent at the start of trading with energy giant Saudi Aramco rising 1.0 per cent from historic lows on Sunday.

Dubai Financial Market Index climbed 2.2 per cent and its sister United Arab Emirates (UAE) market in Abu Dhabi rose 1.4 per cent. The tiny Muscat Securities Market in Oman inched up 0.2 per cent while Bahrain bourse rose 2.2 per cent. The recovery came as oil prices gained more than 3.0 per cent to above USD51 a barrel. Qatar Stock Exchange, which was closed on Sunday for a holiday, bucked the trend to slide 3.1 per cent at the start of trading.

On Sunday, the first trading day of the week in the region, all the Gulf bourses except Qatar posted heavy losses.

The Saudi market, the region’s largest, had dropped 3.7 per cent to an 18-month low with Saudi Aramco diving to its lowest price since listing about three months ago.

The UAEbourses of Dubai and Abu Dhabi fell 4.5 per cent and 3.6 percent respectively.

Bahrain shares shed 3.4 per cent and the Muscat bourse dropped 1.2 per cent.

The Gulf share recovery came as oil prices gained more than 3.0 per cent to above USD51 a barrel. PHOTO: AFP