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News : Qatar First Bank: shares jump to 10% limit after MSCI index entry

The Peninsula/ Reuters

Qatar’s index dropped 0.7 percent to finish at 9,679.92 yesterday as Vodafone Qatar, the most heavily traded stock, slid 4.1 percent to QR9.74 after MSCI downgraded the stock to its small cap index. Qatar First Bank surged to its 10 percent daily limit in heavy trade after MSCI added it to its small cap index.

The stock posted its biggest volume since the day after it listed in April. Stock markets in Saudi Arabia and Egypt continued pulling back yesterday after big rallies earlier this month, while some individual stocks in the United Arab Emirates moved sharply after MSCI adjusted its indexes.

The Saudi index, which had jumped 22 percent between mid-October and Sunday before profit-taking began on Monday, dropped 2.1 percent to 6,493 points yesterday in heavy trade, pulling back from technical resistance on the July peak of 6,703 points.

However, the index ended well off the day’s low of 6,346 points. Among major losers, National Commercial Bank, the biggest lender, dropped 4.5 percent.

A Saudi fund manager said the market had been supported by local and government funds and when these stopped buying yesterday, profit-taking pressure quickly pushed stocks down.

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