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Global woes, oil weigh; Egypt at 30-month low

 DUBAI: Egypt's bourse slumped to a 30-month low on Sunday, leading a regional decline, with pressured world stocks dampening sentiment and a sharp decline in oil prices threatening local fundamentals.

Egypt's main index fell 2.4 percent to its lowest close since March 2009, with investors wary of the uncertain political outlook in the North African country and discouraged by last week's fall in global markets.

U.S equities recorded their worst weekly loss on Friday since the 2008 financial crisis, hit by anxiety over the euro zone debt crisis and a warning about the US economy.

Saudi Arabia's petrochemical stocks pushed the index to its largest one-day decline in two weeks as investors worried about a squeeze on margins for chemical companies.

Crude fell to a six-week low on Friday on fresh concerns about Europe's ability to manage debt and a possible banking crisis. US November crude fell 66 cents to settle at $79.85, its lowest close since August 9.

"So far, we believe fundamentals have been insulated from what's happening globally, given that oil prices until last week proved to be resilient," said Rami Sidani, Schroders Middle East head of investment.

"(But) if oil stays below $80 for an extended period of time, the investment for the region will be hampered... (since) government spending is the main economic driver."

Saudi Basic Industries Corp (SABIC), the world's largest chemicals producer, fell 0.5 percent. Yanbu National Petrochemical Co (Yansab) dropped 1.7 percent and Rabigh Refining and Petrochemical Co dipped 2 percent.

These stocks are closely correlated to oil prices, which impact their bottom line.

The index lost 1 percent, extending 2011 losses to about 8 percent.

In Kuwait, Global Investment House led the index to a three-week low, as investors already jittery on political tension were spooked by global worries.

Global fell 12.7 percent, its largest one-day fall in over two years as the firm talks to creditors to restructure debt.

It asked creditors to delay principal repayments on debt due in December, it said earlier this month, as part of a move to renegotiate a $1.7 billion restructuring.

Telecoms operator and index heavyweight Zain dipped 1 percent after a court ruled that its annual shareholders meeting held in April was void.

"All asset classes are suffering regional markets are sensitive to oil prices and its drop is also an issue," said a Kuwait-based trader on condition of anonymity.

The benchmark slipped 1.1 percent to its lowest close since Sept. 4.

In Abu Dhabi, the index hit 29-week lows after closing 0.8 percent lower.

Dana Gas fell 1.8 percent and property stocks also suffered. Aldar Properties shed 1.7 percent and Sorouh Real Estate dropped 2.7 percent.

Elsewhere, Dubai's index declined 0.9 percent, Qatar slipped 0.5 percent and Oman lost 0.7 percent.



The measure slumped 2.4 percent to 4,233 points.


The index fell 1 percent to 6,083 points.

The measure dropped 1.1 percent to 5,850 points.


The index dipped 0.8 percent to 2,538 points.


The index declined 0.9 percent to 1,447 points.


The benchmark fell 0.5 percent to 8,402 points.


The index slipped 0.7 percent to 5,661 points.


The measure fell 1.9 percent to 1,222 points.


Copyright Reuters, 2011



Index Closing Chg%
Arrow DJIA 17,719.92 0.44
Arrow Nasdaq 5,108.67 0.37
Arrow S&P 2,080.41 0.46
Arrow FTSE 6,356.09 0.30
Arrow DAX 11,382.23 0.78
Arrow CAC-40 4,957.60 0.56
Arrow Nikkei 19,747.47 0.69
Arrow H.Seng 21,996.42 0.33
Arrow Sensex 26,145.67 0.07

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