Stock markets in Qatar and the UAE received a significant boost in June, when MSCI, one of the world’s largest compilers of financial indices, announced that it was promoting the two countries to its emerging markets index. Previously they had both been classified as frontier markets. The upgrade has the potential for the Gulf exchanges to attract a wave of funds from asset managers who use the MSCI indices as the basis for their investment strategy. There was no change to the classifications of other regional markets covered by MSCI, including Bahrain, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman and Tunisia, all of which are classed as frontier markets.

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