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Friday, 4 June 2010

AFP: Kuwait foreign assets soar to $277 bln: report


The foreign assets of OPEC member Kuwait swelled to 277 billion dollars at the end of the fiscal year to March 31, up from 238 billion dollars a year earlier, the Al-Jarida newspaper said Friday.

The assets are held in two state-owned funds, the Reserve Fund for Future Generations (RFFG) whose assets grew to 220 billion dollars on March 31 up on 196 billion dollars the previous year.

The second fund is the General State Reserve with 57 billion dollars at the end of the last fiscal year up from 42 billion dollars, Al-Jarida said.

Saudi Arabia holds out for mortgage reform | beyondbrics | FT.com


Rumours about the imminent approval of the Saudi mortgage law continue to circulate, but have yet to materialise.

The Shura Council, the unelected consultative body, approved a draft nearly two years ago, but Saudi officials continue to refine details, with attention to compliance with Islamic law and averting excesses witnessed in Dubai or overseas.

In Saudi Arabia, real estate is driven mainly by domestic demand rather than speculative money. Less than 35 per cent of Saudis own their own homes and more than a million units will be needed in the coming five years.

Dow Jones Indexes Announces Component Changes in Global, Regional and Country Titans Blue-Chip Indexes - MarketWatch


In the Dow Jones GCC Titans 40 Index, the following three stocks will be added: Gulf Bank of Kuwait K.S.C. (Kuwait, Banks, GBK.KW), Ahli United Bank B.S.C. (Bahrain, Banks, AUB.BH) and Vodafone Qatar Q.S.C. (Qatar, Telecommunications, VFQS.DO). Companies exiting are: Union National Bank PJSC (UAE, Banks, UNB.AD), Ithmaar Bank B.S.C. (Bahrain, Banks, ITHMR.BH), and Heritage Oil PLC (Great Britain, Oil & Gas, HOIL.LN). Total free-float market capitalization of the reconstituted Dow Jones GCC Titans 40 Index increased to US$48.55 billion from US$46.18 billion as of June 2, 2010. The Dow Jones GCC Titans 40 Index measures the performance of the 40 leading stocks traded in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) member countries of Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates.

Iran offers 250m euros in bonds for gas field - BusinessWeek


Iran's state television says the country has begun offering euro250 million ($305 million) in bonds in foreign markets to help finance the development of the huge South Pars Gas field.

The state TV report said Thursday that branches of Iranian banks abroad will sell the bonds for the next ten days.

Last month, Iran issued some euro250 million in bonds for the same project.

Moody's downgrades Dubai Bank On Debtor Concerns | iMarketNews.com


Moody's Investors Service cut the deposit ratings of a major Dubai financial institution Thursday, citing its worry that there could be more deterioration in the credit fundamentals of the bank's Dubai debtors.

The ratings agency also warned that liquidity and funding will potentially remain sources of further vulnerability for Dubai-based banks going forward, restricting new lending.

Dubai Bank, with reported total assets of AED17.4 billion ($4.7 billion) as at 31 December 2009, had its local and foreign currency deposit ratings downgraded by two notches to Baa2/Prime-3 from A3/Prime-2.