DUBAI: Gulf stock markets may consolidate further on Monday as oil prices remain below last week’s highs.
Brent crude edged up 0.2 percent to $60.34 per barrel by 0530 GMT, helped by cautious optimism that another euro zone crisis over Greek debt has been averted for now by a compromise between Athens and its creditors. The commodity hit $63 per barrel last week.
Oil’s sharp rebound earlier this year and fourth-quarter earnings reports were the main drivers behind equity market rallies across the Gulf. With both factors largely gone, volumes dropped and markets traded sideways on Sunday.
Analysts say stocks could remain trendless for a while. Brokerage NBAD Securities on Monday advised investors in the United Arab Emirates to stay on the sidelines.
“At times like these when the trend is uncertain, investors should look to increase their cash position,” it said in a note.
Among the few major companies in the region that have yet to report fourth-quarter earnings is UAE telecommunications giant Etisalat, whose board will review them on Wednesday.
In contrast to Abu Dhabi’s overall market, trading volume in the stock has increased in the last two sessions. Last at 11.55 dirhams, it faces resistance at 11.80 dirhams, the peaks it hit in September and October.
In Qatar, large property developer Ezdan Holding will hold a board meeting to review financial results on Tuesday, which may attract investors willing to bet on a generous dividend.
In global markets, Asian stocks outside of Japan are almost flat as markets return from Lunar New Year holidays.