Middle East Stocks Mostly Gain, Qatar Jumps on Raised Foreign Ownership Limits

Middle East shares mostly rose, with Qatar advancing after several companies raised foreign ownership limits. Egypt was closed for the holidays.

Qatar Electricity and Water Co, Qatar Islamic Bank and Industries Qatar each raised their foreign ownership ceilings to 49% from 25%, starting on Monday.Higher ceilings should eventually lift stocks’ weight in emerging market indexes, Reuters noted.

In other company news, Arab Cement went ex-dividend.

United Electronics reported a 66% year-on-year rise in estimated Q1 net profit as sales rose 7.5%.

Dana Gas said on Sunday it received a new injunction from the English High Court restricting its ability to pay dividends or increase its debt. Dana said it would challenge the order, which was the result of its dispute with creditors over whether it must redeem $700 million of Islamic bonds, Reuters reports.

Saudi Arabia’s main index inched up 0.1% to 7,975 points, Dubai gained 0.4% to 3,082 points, Abu Dhabi jumped 1.4% to 4,665 points, Qatar rallied 1.8% to 8,937 points, Kuwait dropped 1.1% to 4,783 points,Bahrain firmed 0.2% to 1,287 points and Oman edged up 0.1% to 4,828 points.