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Wed 22 Aug 2012 10:11 AM

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Kuwait's Wataniya seen rallying as trade resumes

Trading in Gulf markets is likely to be muted with some bourses still closed for Eid al Fitr holiday

Kuwait's Wataniya seen rallying as trade resumes
Kuwaiti businessmen, Kuwaiti investors

Kuwait's Wataniya is seen catching up with Qatar Telecom's (Qtel) offer for the remaining stake it does not own in the telco when it resumes trade on Wednesday following a two-month suspension.

Qtel already owns 52.5 percent of the firm and is offering KWD2.6 per share for the stake. Wataniya shares was were suspended in late June at KWD2.2 after Qtel's initial offer.

"Wataniya will rally up but we will not feel the full impact of it because of timing," says Fouad Darwish, head of brokerage at Global Investment House.

Trading in Gulf markets is likely to be muted with some bourses still closed for Eid al Fitr holiday, and many market participants still away on vacations.

Kuwait's bourse has booked losses for three consecutive months since May amid political upheaval. Last week, the government asked the country's top court to rule on a law that divides the Gulf Arab US ally into five constituencies, setting the stage for a showdown with opposition politicians.

The Wataniya deal could help draw focus away from the politically-driven negative sentiment and bring back momentum, Darwish says.

In the UAE, National Bank of Abu Dhabi , will be in focus after saying it has repaid AED1bn (US$272.3m) of subordinated notes to the country's Ministry of Finance, it said on Thursday.

Gulf investors have mixed cues from global markets. Asian shares slipped on Wednesday as slumping Japanese exports reminded investors of the risks the euro zone debt crisis poses to regional economies.

Brent crude steadied near US$115 a barrel on Wednesday, supported by hopes that European policymakers will act to resolve the region's debt crisis and by Middle East tensions that kept supply disruption concerns intact.

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