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MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi falls, most markets trade narrowly

* Al Rajhi Bank, Ma'aden, SABIC sink in Saudi

* Almarai surges after PIF keeps 16.3 percent stake

* Dubai's Islamic Arab Insurance swings widely in heavy trade

* Abu Dhabi's Dana sinks after London sukuk hearings adjourned

* Qatar National Bank firm after last week's earnings

By Andrew Torchia

DUBAI, Oct 15 (Reuters) - Most Middle East stock markets traded in narrow ranges on Sunday while Saudi Arabia was dragged down by several major blue chips.

The Saudi index dropped 0.7 percent as Al Rajhi Bank lost 1.0 percent and miner Ma'aden sank 1.9 percent. Petrochemical producer Saudi Basic Industries fell 0.7 percent.

Insurers were roughly evenly split between gainers and losers after they tumbled last week on expectations for a shakeout in the sector caused by tougher regulation. Amana Insurance, which had plunged 14.9 percent last week, surged 5.8 percent in unusually heavy trade.

Food company Almarai rose 3.4 percent after saying the Public Investment Fund, the main Saudi sovereign wealth fund, had retained a 16.3 percent stake in the company after a 25 percent capital increase through an issue of bonus shares.

Dubai's index edged down 0.1 percent to 3,658 points, retreating from technical resistance at 3,667-3,681 points, the August and September peaks.

Islamic Arab Insurance, the most heavily traded stock, surged in early trade but closed 2.4 percent lower. On Thursday, it had risen sharply in its heaviest volume since March, attracting speculative traders into the stock.

Abu Dhabi fell 0.2 percent as Dana Gas sank 3.8 percent after a London High Court judge adjourned hearings on its $700 million of Islamic bonds to mid-November.

The company is fighting sukuk holders in courts in Britain and the United Arab Emirates, arguing it does not need to redeem the instruments because they have become invalid; some equity investors have been hoping the hearings will result in a settlement that benefits the firm.

Qatar's index was almost flat. Qatar National Bank , which last week reported solid third-quarter earnings, climbed 1.2 percent.

Egypt's index edged up 0.1 percent. GB Auto surged 9.7 percent in unusually heavy trade.


HIGHLIGHTS


SAUDI ARABIA


* The index dropped 0.7 percent to 6,938 points.


DUBAI


* The index edged down 0.1 percent to 3,658 points.


ABU DHABI


* The index fell 0.2 percent to 4,518 points.


QATAR


* The index edged down 0.01 percent to 8,341 points.


EGYPT


* The index edged up 0.1 percent to 13,906 points.


KUWAIT


* The index edged down 0.1 percent to 6,622 points.


BAHRAIN


* The index slipped 0.03 percent to 1,274 points.


OMAN


* The index rose 0.2 percent to 5,139 points. (Reporting by Andrew Torchia, editing by Louise Heavens)