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Major Gulf markets ease, Saudi to snap 4-day winning streak

November 21, 2023 00:00:00

Major stock markets in the Gulf fell in early trade on Monday as the markets have already priced in global monetary policy easing for next year, reports Reuters.

Markets have all but priced out the risk of a further hike in US policy interest rates in December or next year, and imply a 30 per cent chance of an easing starting in March.

Monetary policy in the six-member Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) is usually guided by the decisions of the US Federal Reserve, as most regional currencies are pegged to the dollar.

Saudi Arabia's benchmark index dropped 0.3 per cent, on course to snap four sessions of gains, with ACWA Power losing 0.7 per cent and Saudi Electricity Co retreating 0.5 per cent.

Oil giant Saudi Aramco has discovered two new natural gas fields in the Empty Quarter region, the state news agency quoted Saudi energy minister Prince Abdulaziz bin Salman as saying on Sunday.

However, Aramco was down 0.6 per cent.

Dubai's main share index was flat.

In Abu Dhabi, the index eased 0.1 per cent, hit by a 0.4 per cent drop in the country's biggest lender First Abu Dhabi Bank.

There were media reports Israel, the US and Hamas had reached a tentative agreement to free dozens of hostages in Gaza in exchange for a five-day pause in fighting, but no confirmation as yet.

The Qatari benchmark declined 0.4 per cent, weighed down by a 1.1 per cent fall in the Gulf's biggest lender Qatar National Bank.

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