(Bloomberg) – Gulf stocks declined as the USA's best-known Iranian general was killed across the region.
Kuwait's benchmark index fell more than 4% just minutes after trading started, while losses were recorded in Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Oman.
Geopolitical tensions rose after Iranian general Qassem Soleimani was killed in a US drone attack in Iraq last week. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani told Soleimani people that the United States "does not see the effects of their mistake today, but they will see it for many years to come". President Donald Trump said late Saturday that the US would have identified 52 Iranian locations if Tehran takes revenge.
"Investors who hoped for lower geopolitical tensions in the Middle East and North Africa in 2020 were disappointed on the second day of the year," said Mohammed Ali Yasin, chief strategy officer at Al Dhabi Capital Ltd. based in Abu Dhabi. "2020 will continue to be a year of high geopolitical tensions in our region."
Trump increases Iran's rhetoric as de-escalation vows quickly fade As tensions escalate with Iran, Trump decided after Soleimani KillingU.S to take the oil industry's most extreme measure against turmoil in the Middle East. Murder of Soleimani leaves Trump “completely unpredictable”
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