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Thu 4 Aug 2011 10:41 AM

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Qatar hits near 4-week high; Egypt rebounds

Most Gulf Arab markets ends positive as focus shifts towards regional corporate activity

Qatar hits near 4-week high; Egypt rebounds
stock market

Most regional markets ended in positive territory as focus
shifted away from concerns regarding global economic growth and turned more
towards regional corporate activity.

Qatar shares hit their highest level since July 11, with
only two listed showing selling pressure.

Qatar Navigation jumped 5.1 percent, its highest close since
June 19. Qatar Petroleum awarded a 20-year, QR1.9bn ($522m)contract to Qatar
Shipping Co. for port services.

Doha Bank gained 3.3 percent and Commercial Bank of Qatar
(CBQ) climbed 0.7 percent.

"In Qatar, we're seeing some names rally as expected,
particularly CBQ and Doha bank, whose financial performance started recovering
last quarter," said Sleiman Aboulhosn, assistant fund manager at Al Masah
Capital.

Separately, Qatar's central bank plans to sell QR4bn ($1.1bn)
of treasury bills of different maturities on Aug 8 in a bid to help build a
yield curve in the Gulf Arab state, a central bank source said on Thursday.

The benchmark climbed 1.1 percent to close at 8,490.81.

Support lies at 8,500 with 8,600 serving as the next
technical resistance, said a Doha-based trader who asked not to be identified.

Egypt's bourse ended a two-day losing streak as investors
hoped that the unprecedented trial of ousted President Hosni Mubarak will bring
stability, traders said.

Mubarak, accused of corruption and involvement in killing
protesters, appeared in court on Wednesday. Protesters had demanded a public
trial. He is the first Arab leader to stand trial in person since popular
uprisings swept the Middle East this year.

The EGX30 index closed up 1.7 percent at 5,008 points.

In Dubai, contractor Arabtec rose 2.1 percent and hit a
three-month high ahead of second-quarter earnings.

Five analysts polled by Reuters expect the firm to post a quarterly
net profit of AED39.6m, down from AED111.1m in the year-earlier period.

"We expect the company to continue suffering from slow
progress on projects and weak margins," said a note by CAPM Research.
"We believe the company is still facing delays on its newly awarded
projects and especially those outside the UAE."

Dubai's index climbed 0.9 percent, up in four of last five
sessions.

Air Arabia ended 0.8 percent higher after posting a 2
percent rise in second-quarter profit a day earlier and beating analyst
estimates.

"Prospects for Air Arabia look better than past
quarters-- profits have stopped falling," said Ibrahim Masood, senior
investment officer at Mashreq bank.

"These are reasonable numbers. In the short-term I hope
we've reached a bottom -- its stock is trading far below its book value."

Emaar Properties rose 2.7 percent and Dubai Financial Market
advanced 2.6 percent, together accounting for a third of the shares.

In Abu Dhabi, Aldar Properties closed 1.6 percent higher
ahead of its quarterly results, accounting for a quarter of all shares traded.

Aldar swung to a second quarter net profit of AED127.3m from
a loss of AED475.28m in the comparable period last year.

Telecoms operator Etisalat climbed 1 percent higher,
advancing for a third day since saying its Indian mobile phone joint venture
partner withdrew a petition filed against the company before India's Company
Law Board.

The emirate's measure gained 0.8 percent and hit a 10-day
high.

Both Kuwait and Bahrain, however, ended the day lower.
Kuwait's index fell 0.02 percent to close at 6066.20 while Bahrain shares
dropped 0.3 percent to 1281.

Global stocks were also weaker as the yen's tumble from near
record highs on Thursday and concerns about slowing global economic growth
pushed world stocks towards the previous day's 2011 low.

Continued on next page...

Thursday's highlights

Qatar

* The benchmark gained 1.1 percent to 8,491 points.

Dubai

* The index rose 0.9 percent to 1,541 points.

Abu Dhabi

* The index rose 0.8 percent to 2,671 points.

Kuwait

* The measure eased 0.02 percent to 6,066 points.

Oman

* The index climbed 0.01 percent to 5,759 points.

Bahrain

* The measure slipped 0.3 percent to 1,281 points.