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Most Gulf Bourses Muted in Early Trade

May 14 (Reuters) - Most stock markets in the Gulf were subdued in early trading on Tuesday, as investors were cautious ahead of the U.S. inflation data for clues on the Federal Reserve's interest rate cut strategy.

Dubai's benchmark stock index slipped 0.4%, dragged down by industry and real estate sectors, with blue-chip developer Emaar Properties sliding 1.1% and Air Arabia dropping 3.4%.

The low-cost flyer Air Arabia reported a 22% decline in its quarterly profit on Monday.

In Abu Dhabi, the benchmark stock index was down 0.2%, with conglomerate Alpha Dhabi falling 1.6% and First Abu Dhabi Bank, the UAE's largest lender, dropping 1%.

Saudi Arabia's benchmark stock index was little changed in early trading, with Al Rajhi Bank, the world's largest Islamic lender, gaining 1.1% and Elm Company adding 1.7%. Emaar Economic City, however, dropped 4.7%, after the developer's quarterly loss widened.

The Qatari benchmark index edged up 0.2%, helped by a 0.7% gain in Masraf Al Rayan and a 0.4% rise in Qatar National Bank, the region's biggest lender.

Investors are watching the U.S. Consumer Price Index data due on Wednesday for clues to when the Fed will consider cutting interest rates.

Most Gulf currencies are pegged to the dollar, and any U.S. monetary policy change is usually mimicked by Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Qatar.

Reporting by Md Manzer Hussain; Editing by Rashmi Aich

Source: Reuters

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