Gulf stocks gain with Dubai closing 13 percent up

AP News
Posted: Dec 18, 2014 7:52 AM

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Dubai's main stock market has gained 13 percent after closing at its lowest point of the year earlier in the week.

Abu Dhabi's stock market also closed 6.7 percent higher on Thursday while the Saudi index closed 8.9 percent higher.

Analysts say investor concerns that Arab governments could cut spending on the backs of sliding oil prices were alleviated Wednesday when Saudi Arabia's finance minister suggested the government would continue spending on development projects as part of the 2015 budget — a sentiment reiterated by officials across the energy-rich Gulf.

The upswing in Gulf equities comes on the back of a rise in the price of benchmark U.S. crude, which closed 54 cents higher at $56.47 on Wednesday. Brent crude gained $1.17 to close at $61.18.