STOCKS NEWS MIDEAST-Agility jumps in Kuwait after 2013 earnings

Reuters Middle East

0830 GMT - Shares in Kuwait's Agility, the largest logistics group in the Gulf Arab region, surge 7.4 percent after the company reports a 37 percent rise in 2013 net profit.

Agility's board also recommends a cash dividend of 40 fils per share and 5 percent bonus shares. The company restated its earnings for 2012, preventing a comparison of its fourth-quarter 2013 profit with the year-earlier figure. [ID:nL5N0ML1C0}

The company is the most heavily traded stock in Kuwait. The market as a whole remains slightly soft, with the main index down 0.1 percent.

In Dubai, Emaar Properties slides 0.5 percent to 9.78 dirhams after briefly touching 9.90 dirhams, its peak last week, while trading volume falls. Dubai's market index is flat.

Some of Dubai's real estate names are still in the black, however; Union Properties is up 1.9 percent and Deyaar gains 1.5 percent. ----------------------------------------------------------------

0545 GMT - Bourses in Dubai and Saudi Arabia are in a bullish mood, having closed in pronounced uptrends on Sunday, while some stocks could see movements based on dividend eligibility dates.

Dubai's index closed on an intra-day high of 4,347 points on Sunday, lifted largely by real estate stocks such as Emaar Properties.

"The market is expected to witness further climbing moves to 4,500," NBAD Securities says in a note.

Contractor Drake and Scull was one of the top gainers on Sunday, jumping 4.2 percent to 1.74 dirhams. It faces technical resistance at 1.86 dirhams, the February peak.

Air Arabia, which gained 4.1 percent last week, may see further buying on Monday, the last day when its shares entitle holders to the 7.25 percent cash dividend for 2013.

Bank of Sharjah, on the other hand, could come under selling pressure as it goes ex-dividend on Monday.

Saudi Arabia's bourse ended Sunday very close to its intra-day high; the uptrend extended to many sectors including petrochemicals, banks and cement and food producers.

In Bahrain, Khaleeji Commercial Bank said it had cancelled its plan to merge with unlisted Bank Al Khair; the likely terms had not been disclosed, but investors may view the news as negative for the stock as it deprives Khaleeji, temporarily at least, of a chance to gain scale. (Reporting by Olzhas Auyezov; Editing by Andrew Torchia)

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