Last updated: 27 August, 2015

Gulf stocks join global rally to cut heavy losses

Stock markets in the energy-rich Gulf states joined a global rally Thursday, reducing heavy losses from a tumultuous week that saw share prices dive.

With China a major regional trading partner and one of the most important buyers of Middle East crude, Gulf exchanges dropped heavily this week as oil prices hit new lows and Chinese economic troubles roiled international markets.

A recovery was underway as the local trading week ended on Thursday, but not all of the losses had been won back.

The Saudi bourse, the largest Arab capital market, rose 3.0 percent on Thursday but ended the week down 5.1 percent on 7,604.32 points.

The Dubai Financial Market Index rallied 4.03 percent to close on 3,648.45 points but remained 1.6 percent lower on the week.

The bourses of Qatar and Abu Dhabi each rose 3.0 percent Thursday recovering almost all the losses during the week.

The Kuwait bourse rose 1.1 percent on Thursday but was 2.9 percent down on the week. The Omani Securities Exchange was 4.5 percent lower than last week despite rising 0.6 percent on Thursday.

The Bahrain bourse was almost unchanged on Thursday and dropped 1.4 percent on the week.

Gulf stock markets began to slide in late July and the slump worsened in August, during which all seven bourses dropped below their closing figures at the end of 2014.

Saudi and Dubai stocks suffered the most, losing more than 20 percent over the month.

“Amidst a weak economic background both locally and internationally, bogged down by anaemic oil prices… the million dollar question that one may dare to ask is whether we have seen the worst,” Kuwait’s Global Investment House said in a research note.