Most Gulf stock markets rose on Sunday against a backdrop of rising oil prices on improving economic indicators from China and the United States.

Oil prices, a catalyst for the Gulf’s financial markets, rose about 1% on Friday as stronger Chinese data added to recent US indicators feeding optimism over global oil demand.

The Qatari benchmark index was up 0.1%, supported by gains in most sectors, with Qatar Gas Transport rising 1.2% and Qatar Navigation up 2.2%.

Meanwhile, the International Monetary Fund said on Friday that Qatar’s average economic growth was expected to be lifted to about 4.5% by a significant expansion of liquefied natural gas (LNG) production.

Saudi Arabia’s benchmark index was little changed, with ACWA Power rising 3.4% and Saudi Aramco up 0.5%. State-owned oil giant Aramco said on Friday that it had signed preliminary agreements with US companies for developing lower-carbon energy solutions.

However, Saudi National Bank and developer Makkah Construction slipped by 1.5% and 8% respectively.

UAE stock markets mixed amid uncertainty over Fed policy

Outside the Gulf, Egypt’s blue-chip index advanced for a second straight session to end 4.5% higher, with most of its constituents posting gains, led by industry and materials stocks.

Misr Fertilizers Production climbed 17.8% and El Sewedy Electric jumped by 20% after Egypt’s Financial Regulatory Authority (FRA) said on Sunday that Electra Investment Holding had submitted an offer to acquire up to a 24.5% stake in El Sewedy at $1.05 per share.

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