The Jerusalem index of the Palestinian territories soared 5.6 percent this week in stark contrast to most other Arab stock markets, as Egypt suffered badly again.
The Al-Quds index rose 5.6 percent to close at 260.98, Bakheet Financial Advisors (BFA) said Saturday.
The gains were chalked up on hopes that the Palestinians will finally share Jerusalem as a capital with Israel, Bakheet noted.
But that was before the bloodshed in the holy city on Friday, when Israeli forces killed seven Palestinians and wounded 220 more.
The Tunindex in Tunisia was the next best performer, putting on 1.6 percent to 1,445.30 points, amid optimism after the merger of three banks.
The Amman Stock Exchange index also managed an 0.8 percent increase to close on 132.65 points.
However, Egypt's Hermes Financial Index plunged another 3.9 percent on top of another 4.2 percent the previous week to close at 7,476.66 points.
The Hermes suffered from "investors liquidating their blue chip shares in anticipation of soon-to-be privatized Egypt Telecommunication Company," Bakheet explained.
Lebanon's BLOM index also continued a downward slide, losing 1.9 percent on top of last week's 3.6 percent to close on 629.49 points. Uncertainty over the next government's ability to tackle the country's difficulties has hit investors.
In the Gulf, markets were affected by retreating oil prices on the US decision to dip into its Strategic Petroleum Reserves, the Riyadh-based investment specialists said.
Bahrain's BSE Index and Saudi Arabia's NCFEI finished the week just as they had started it on 1,866.14 and 2,361.75 respectively.
But Kuwait's KSE slipped 0.2 percent to 1,441.10 and the Omani MSM index dropped 0.9 percent to 194.27.
The NBAD in the Emirates weakened another 1 percent to 2,597.43 points and Qatar's CBQ index lost 1.4 percent to end at 208.35.
In Morocco, the Casablanca Stock Exchange index shed 0.3 percent to 724.38 points.
©Agence France Presse 2000
© 2000 Mena Report (www.menareport.com)