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Saudi Stock Index Above 11,000 Points, First Time Since 2008

Saudi Stock Index Above 11,000 Points, First Time Since 2008

The stock index has jumped 13.3 per cent since the opening of the market was announced on July 22.

Saudi Arabia’s main stock index rose above the psychologically important level of 11,000 points on Monday for the first time since January 2008, continuing an uptrend triggered by plans to open the market to foreign investors.

The Kingdom’s stock market regulator said last month that it would allow direct investment by foreigners in the first half of next year. It published draft regulations for the reform last Thursday.

The market benchmark, up 1.3 per cent, rose on Monday largely on the back of banks such as Alinma Bank and Al Rajhi Bank, which gained 8.7 and 3.2 per cent respectively.

Analysts say Saudi banks, which are to a considerable extent financed by Islamic deposits bearing no interest, will benefit from the expected rise in U.S. interest rates. The Saudi riyal is pegged to the U.S. dollar, meaning Saudi rate policy follows U.S. policy.

The stock index has jumped 13.3 per cent since the opening of the market was announced on July 22.

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