KUWAIT CITY (AFP) – Stock markets across the Gulf fell sharply on Monday, shedding up to seven percent of their value on the Lehman Brothers bankruptcy and the fall in oil prices.
The Saudi bourse, the largest in the Arab world, fell 6.6 percent during trading while the Dubai Financial Market shed five percent.
Kuwait Stock Exchange, the second largest in the Arab world, was 4.4 percent down, while the Doha Securities Market dropped 6.9 percent. The Abu Dhabi bourse fell 4.7 percent.
“Two factors are pulling the Gulf bourses down — the psychological impact of the Lehman Brothers issue and the sharp fall in oil prices,” said Kuwaiti financial analyst Ali al-Nimesh.
Lehman Brothers — the fourth largest investment bank in the United States — shook the world’s financial system on Monday by seeking bankruptcy protection.
Oil prices meanwhile tumbled below 93 dollars a barrel in London, their lowest level since February, on the prospect of weaker demand for energy amid the worsening financial crisis.