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GCC stock bourses lost $200bn of market cap in 2015

Region’s markets performed in parallel with oil prices, which have been falling since mid-2014

Financial markets in member states of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) shed a whopping $200 billion of their combined market capitalisation, which stood at $902bn, according to a new report.

The National Bank of Kuwait said the region’s markets performed in parallel with oil prices, which have been on a downhill slope since mid-2014.

The report indicated that the Morgan Stanley Total Return Index for all GCC markets declined 16 per cent, down to a 2008 level.

It indicated that the decline in oil prices fueled concerns about the financial sustainability and growth in the region’s economies, referring to announcements by GCC countries that they are committed to supporting the non-oil sector.

The report noted that all GCC stock markets ended 2015 on lower notes as the Saudi and Dubai markets retreated 17 per cent each in spite of the strong performance of the Saudi market at the beginning of the year as a result of the decision to open the market to foreign investors.

($1 = AED3.67, at the time of publishing)