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MIDEAST STOCKS-Most major Gulf bourses edge up, Shuaa continues slide in Dubai

Dubai@

DUBAI, Feb 18 (Reuters) - Most major Gulf stock markets edged up in early trade on Sunday although Dubai fell, partly because of a continued slide in Shuaa Capital.

The Saudi index was up 0.5 percent after 55 minutes with blue-chip bank Al Rajhi gaining 0.9 percent. National Medical Care Co rose 1.3 percent after proposing to resume dividend payments for 2017.

But Buruj Cooperative Insurance sank 6.3 percent after reporting a 62 percent decline in fourth-quarter net profit, as gross written premiums fell.

Qatar gained 0.3 percent, helped by a 1.6 percent rise in drilling rig provider Gulf International Services . Abu Dhabi also added 0.3 percent as Abu Dhabi National Energy Co increased 1.6 percent.

In Dubai, however, the index slipped 0.6 percent as Shuaa, which has been in a downtrend for six weeks, lost 4.5 percent and GFH Financial, the most heavily traded stock, fell 1.5 percent.

Courier Aramex added 0.9 percent to 4.69 dirhams, heading for a fourth straight day of gains. It has been rising from one-year lows since it reported strong fourth-quarter earnings. On Thursday it broke resistance on the January peak of 4.55 dirhams, triggering a double bottom formed by the December and February lows and pointing up to around 5.0 dirhams. (Reporting by Andrew Torchia; Editing by Susan Fenton)