Petrochemical sector leads Saudi stock market rise

Petrochemical stocks led Saudi Arabia’s stock market higher in early trade on Sunday after oil prices rose sharply last week, while Egypt’s bourse rose on the back of Global Telecom, a favourite of foreign investors.

The Saudi index gained 1.2 per cent to 6,048 points in the first 45 minutes as Saudi Basic Industries and the petrochemical sector as a whole both surged 2.1 per cent.

Alujain Corp, an industrial investment company focused on petrochemicals, jumped 5.7 per cent despite reporting a 36 per cent drop in last year’s net profit.

The index is now close to technical resistance on the early February and end-January peaks of 6,056-6,099 points; any break would turn it short-term bullish.

Egypt’s index added 0.9 per cent as Global Telecom gained 2.0 per cent to 2.02 Egyptian pounds. In a report on Thursday, AlphaMena Research rated the stock a “buy” with a six-month target price of 6.75 pounds, citing attractive valuations despite concern over its Algerian subsidiary.

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