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Gulf may edge up as oil rises; earnings may aid Dubai

The correlation between oil prices and Gulf equity markets has strengthened in recent months

Published: Updated:

Stock markets in the Middle East may edge up on Monday as oil prices have firmed in early Asian trade, while Dubai’s bourse may be supported by positive corporate earnings.

Benchmark Brent futures were up 0.8 percent at $34.32 a barrel at 0507 GMT. They fell 1.2 percent on Friday after staging a two-day rally.

The correlation between oil prices and Gulf equity markets has strengthened in recent months with the majority of investors in the region believing markets will continue to trade in almost lockstep with crude prices in the near term.

Dubai’s index erased some of Thursday’s gains on Sunday but it remains over the psychologically important level of 3,000 points for a second straight session.

Positive earnings from Emaar Malls may help boost its shares along with parent company Emaar Properties. Emaar Malls reported a 5.5 percent rise in fourth-quarter net profit to 435 million dirhams ($118 million).

Emaar Malls was down 3.5 percent while Emaar Properties was up 0.9 percent on Sunday.

But Air Arabia, the United Arab Emirates’ only publicly listed airline, reported its third consecutive quarterly profit drop on Sunday. It made a net profit of 59 million dirhams, below SICO Bahrain’s estimate of 79.3 million dirhams.