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Saturday, 26 June 2010

Saudi Shares Gain, Recouping Earlier Losses, as Oil Prices Rise - BusinessWeek

Petrochemical and retail companies lifted Saudi Arabian stocks from an earlier loss on the week’s first day, as oil prices advanced to a seven-week high.

Saudi Basic Industries Corp., the world’s largest petrochemical maker, Savola, a Saudi food producer, and Arab National Bank helped the Saudi Tadawul All Share Index to rise 0.2 percent to 6,352.89. The gauge had earlier slid as much as 0.6 percent, led by declines in real-estate companies.

“It was a buying opportunity for petrochemicals on the back of strong oil prices as well as the retail sector,” said John Sfakianakis, chief economist at Banque Saudi Fransi in Riyadh. “Global markets were jittery over the Saudi weekend and it is translated in the Saudi stock market today.”

Dar Al Arkan Real Estate, Taiba Holding, Qassim Cement: Saudi Stock Movers - Bloomberg

The Saudi Tadawul All Share Index declined as much as 0.6 percent to 6,306.2, the lowest intraday level since June 23. The following stocks rose or fell in the Saudi stock market. Symbols are in parentheses.

Dar Al Arkan Real Estate Development Co. (ALARKAN AB) dropped as much as 1.6 percent to 12.6 riyals, the lowest intraday level since March 2009. Saudi Arabia’s biggest property company by market value swapped $225 million of its fixed-rate Islamic bonds into floating-rate notes to cut borrowing costs.

Taiba Holding Co. (TIRECO AB) decreased as much as 2.4 percent, its steepest intraday drop in a month, to 16.15 riyals. The Saudi real-estate developer in Medina said it won’t pay a second-quarter dividend because of a payment delay from the kingdom’s Ministry of Finance.

Shore investment - Construction & Industry -

With AED 1 billion in completed projects, Hamriyah Free Zone hopes to revitalise Sharjah's economy. Carlin Gerbich reports.

Kick-starting an economy isn't something that can be achieved overnight. Even with the best planning, support from the government and dedicated contractors on board, infrastructure changes take years to complete. Attracting the necessary long-term investors, business partners and new ventures takes a considerable amount of time.

So, the fact that the Hamriyah Free Zone Authority in Sharjah has been able to complete five major projects within the past two years, on time and within budget, is nothing short of sensational.

Total-Saudi joint venture gets $8.5B in financing - BusinessWeek

A joint venture between French oil company Total SA and Saudi Aramco said Friday it secured $8.5 billion in financing for an oil refinery in Jubail, Saudi Arabia.

Saudi Aramco Total Refining and Petrochemical Co. said it secured $4.49 billion in financing from commercial financial institutions, and $4.01 billion from the Public Investment Fund and Export Credit Agencies. The joint venture said it has commitments for about 413.5 billion in financing for the refinery, which is expected to go online in 2013 and produce 400,000 barrels of oil per day.

Saudi Aramco owns 62.5 percent of the joint venture, and Total owns the other 37.5 percent.

U.S.-traded shares of Total dipped 49 cents to $46.75 in afternoon trading.

Sukuk Gain to Six-Month High on Global Growth: Islamic Finance - BusinessWeek

Islamic bonds are trading at their highest level in more than six months as companies reach agreements with creditors to restructure debt and the global economy recovers.

The Dow Jones Citigroup Sukuk Index, which measures the performance of Islamic bonds globally, closed at 120.53 yesterday, the highest since Nov. 30 and leaving it 3.8 percent short of the record set Nov. 25. The index has climbed 6.3 percent from its low in December, helped by Dubai World’s May 20 agreement to restructure part of its $23.5 billion of debt.

“That was a big boost for the global sukuk market,” said Zeid Ayer, who helps manage $1.6 billion of Shariah-compliant equities and bonds in Kuala Lumpur for Principal Global Investors and Malaysia’s CIMB Group Holdings Bhd., which have an asset management joint venture. “Restructuring deals help to bring a lot more clarity to the situation.”

Business 360: Get to grips with the A Race to Rebuild Confidence « - Blogs

Ascot is literally a festival of colors – especially under clear skies as we enjoyed during the start of the racing fixture. Women want to outsmart their counterparts by balancing style with uniqueness as they unveil their latest hats. Men sport their top hat and tails and add their creative touches with bright neck wear.

Ahead of the first race, we pause on the recommendation of one polite usher. Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip pass by in their carriage, and the latter acknowledges the person I am with a tip of his hat accompanied by a warm smile.

I am walking to the winner’s paddock as a guest of H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Ruler of Dubai and Prime Minister of the UAE, and his wife Princess Haya. Both are avid equestrians and had 27 horses running at Royal Ascot under the Godolphin stable. His son Crown Prince Hamdan’s Philly Rainfall won the Jersey Stakes setting a course record. The family is together to collect the first trophy of the week.

Agility Evidence Points to Continued Fraud, U.S. Tells Judge in Atlanta - Bloomberg

Agility may still be overbilling the U.S. on military supplies, federal prosecutors said in a pretrial hearing in a criminal case against the Middle East’s largest storage and logistics company.

“We feel very strongly and have evidence that the fraud has continued,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Barbara Nelan told U.S. Magistrate Judge Alan Baverman today in Atlanta. Agility is accused of overcharging the U.S. government on a multibillion- dollar contract to supply food for troops in Kuwait and Iraq. The Kuwaiti company is “war-profiting,” she said.

The U.S.’s contract with Agility, formerly known as Public Warehousing Co., runs until December, Nelan said.

UAE's Aabar sets July shareholder meet on delisting | Energy & Oil | Reuters

Abu Dhabi's Aabar Investments (AABAR.AD: Quote), the largest stakeholder in Daimler (DAIGn.DE: Quote), called a July 26 shareholder meeting to discuss delisting the company to boost flexibility.

Aabar said its board decided on Thursday to seek regulatory approval for the extraordinary general assembly to convert the world's only listed sovereign wealth fund into a joint stock company and delist it from the Abu Dhabi bourse.

Aabar made investors nervous this week with plans to go private.