Index provider MSCI said on Friday that it would launch standalone equity indexes for Saudi Arabian stocks from June 1 along with a number of other regional benchmarks in the Middle East.
So far, MSCI only had provisional indexes covering the $570 billion Saudi stock market, which is set to open to foreign investors in June
The provisional indexes are to be transitioned into the new stand-alone ones, with constituents and weightings to be announced as part of MSCI’s semi-annual index review on May 12, the index provider said in a statement.
MSCI said it would also launch a series of related regional and capped indexes across Gulf countries, covering Saudi Arabia, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Oman and Bahrain.
The announcement comes after Saudi’s Capital Markets Authority (CMA) published a final set of rules earlier in May governing the opening of its stock market to foreign investors.
The bourse is by far the biggest in the Arab world and one of the last major exchanges globally to open up. Some fund managers estimate the move could attract $50 billion or more of new foreign money in the coming years if Saudi Arabia is included in global indexes – a process that could take several years.