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Major stock markets in the Gulf were mixed in early trade on Sunday, with the Saudi Index outperforming the region amid rising oil prices.

Oil rose on Friday, gaining about 4% on the week as a global energy crunch boosted US prices to their highest in almost seven years, with big power users struggling to meet demand.

Saudi Arabia's benchmark index gained 0.6%, led by a 3.4% rise in Al Rajhi Bank and 1.3% gain in petrochemical maker Saudi Basic Indutries.

In Abu Dhabi, the index edged up 0.1%, with conglomerate International Holding Co (IHC) rising 1%, while its unit Alpha Dhabi Holding advanced 1.4%.

IHC has agreed to buy a 41% stake in Nassar Al Refaee Trading Company, a fruit and vegetable import-export business, in a 166 million dirhams ($45.20 million) deal, Reuters reported a company source as saying.

Dubai's main share index fell 0.1%, hit by a 1.2% fall in blue-chip developer Emaar Properties.

Average residential property prices in Dubai rose 4.4% in the 12 months to August, the highest annual growth since February 2015, real estate investment firm CBRE Group said on Thursday.

Even before the pandemic, the long-term economic trend in the United Arab Emirates had been sluggish since the 2014-2015 oil price crash.

Supply has outpaced demand for new houses and apartments for years in a market where most of the population are foreigners, many of whom left during the pandemic.

The Qatari benchmark added 0.2%, supported by a 1% increase in Commercial Bank and a 1.8% rise in Mesaieed Petrochemical.

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