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Saudi Arabia, Egypt stocks slip as Ramadan thins trade

The Saudi stock index was down 0.03 percent at 9,341 points after a half an hour of trade

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The Saudi Arabian and Egyptian stock markets dipped in early trade on Monday as some investors stepped away from the markets for the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.

The Saudi stock index was down 0.03 percent at 9,341 points after a half an hour of trade. On Sunday it dropped below its 200-day average, now at 9,424 points; two straight daily closes below that level would be technically negative.

Saudi shares dropped last week on disappointment over the small amount of fund inflows from abroad after the market opened to direct foreign investment on June 15.

Some blue chips which led the pull-back rebounded modestly on Monday, with miner Ma'aden up 0.5 percent and Saudi Basic Industries rising 0.4 percent.

Saudi Automotive Services, which hit an eight-year closing high on Sunday, climbed a further 2.1 percent. It has surged more than 25 percent since announcing in May that it had obtained 150 million riyals ($40 million) of bank financing to buy land and build facilities.

Cairo's stock index slipped 0.3 percent as Telecom Egypt lost 1.1 percent.