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Tue 24 Nov 2009 10:37 AM

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Savola leads Saudi index to higher close

UPDATE 6: Emaar drops 2.8%, DFM3.6%, while Kuwait, Bahrain end higher.

Gains among bluechip and consumer stocks helped lift Saudi Arabia's all-share index TASI to close higher.

Savola Group

, the Middle East's biggest sugar refiner and the world's top maker of branded edible oil, rose 3.7 percent.

Banks also rose.
Samba Financial Group

climbed 0.9 percent and
Riyad Bank

gained 0.7 percent.

The index ended 0.2 percent higher at 6,304 points.

Dubai's index slipped to a 10-week closing low in broad-based declines.

"There's a lot of uncertainty in our region and that is affecting the markets," said Mohammed Yasin, Shuaa Securities chief executive.

Emaar Properties

dropped 2.8 percent, Dubai Financial Market fell 3.6 percent and
Drake & Scull

shed 2 percent.

This trio accounted for more than half of all shares changing hands on the index.

Aldar Properties

followed a similar pattern in Abu Dhabi, with investors targeting
Aldar

and
Emaar

because they were among the most liquid stocks in their respective markets and so investors can exit easily.
Aldar

dropped 0.6 percent.

Dubai's index fell 1.9 percent to 2,071 points, its lowest close since September 15.

Abu Dhabi's benchmark ended lower for the fourth session in five, slipping 0.5 percent to 2,894 points.

Dana Gas

dropped 2.8 percent and
Sorouh Real Estate

fellalls 2.9 percent, with this pair claiming almost half of all shares traded.

Zain

and
Agility

rebounded, lifting Kuwait's index to its biggest one-day gain for three weeks.

Zain

climbed 4.2 percent and
Agility

added 2.4 percent. Both stocks have been battered of late.

The index climbed 1.1 percent to 6,869 points, ending higher for the third session in four. Volumes hit a 19-day high.

Qatar's benchmark ended lower for the second session in three, dropping 1.5 percent to 7,151 points in its largest decline for more than a week. Volumes slumped to an 11-week low.

Qatar National Bank

plunged 6.1 percent, but heavyweight
Industries Qatar

rose 0.9 percent to limit index losses.

Bahrain's measure rose for the third trading in four, despite only one of the five largest stocks trading.

The index climbed 0.1 percent to 1,449 points.

Saudi Arabia's index was flat in early trading, with little movement in bluechip names.

The index was up 0.04 percent at 6,294 points. It has ended less than 1 percent up or down for the past 11 sessions.


Galfar Engineering

ended 2.1 percent lower, but
Bank Muscat

recovered some of its previous day's losses, rising 0.9 percent. (Reuters)

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