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Tuesday, 6 March 2012

AFP: Qatari investors take full control of PSG

The US investment fund Colony Capital has sold its 30 percent stake in the football club Paris Saint-Germain, a company source said Tuesday, making the French Ligue 1 leaders wholly-owned by their Qatari investors.
The source said that the sale "was envisaged from the start" and comes after Qatar Sports Investments had already bought 70 percent of Colony's controlling stake in PSG a little less than a year ago.
Under the terms of the deal, Colony held an option to sell its remaining stake that it could exercise at any moment, the source added.

Arabtec Slumps After Aabar Stake Boost Stems Rally: Dubai Mover - Bloomberg

Arabtec Holding PJSC (ARTC) slumped the most in a year on investor speculation a rally was overdone and after data showed Aabar Investments PJSC (AABAR) raised its stake in the United Arab Emirates’ biggest construction company.
Shares of Dubai-based Arabtec, up 104 percent so far this year, tumbled 7.1 percent, the most since March 2011, to 3.25 dirhams at the 2 p.m. close in the emirate. The company was the biggest decliner on Dubai’s measure, which dropped 3.7 percent, the most in more than a year. It was the world’s worst- performing index today, among 93 benchmarks tracked by Bloomberg.
Arabtec had rallied amid bets the company will benefit from regional infrastructure spending and secure contracts in Abu Dhabi, which said in January it plans to resume real-estate projects after reviewing their viability. Aabar, the Abu Dhabi government company which owns a stake in Daimler AG (DAI), increased its ownership to 5.28 percent, according to data posted on Dubai’s stock exchange.

Ratings agencies have no plans to rate UAE, Dubai: Fitch

Ratings agencies have no plans to give the United Arab Emirates or Dubai a credit rating because their governments have not asked to be rated, and their lack of transparency would make a credit assessment difficult, a senior analyst at Fitch said on Tuesday.

There has been speculation in the past year that Dubai might seek a rating, to help with the placement of its international bonds, or that UAE might seek to issue a bond of its own.

Some investors' mandates do not allow them to buy unrated bonds.

Dubai Financial Market intraday March 6, 2012

General Index
Intraday 3 month
Daily Statistics
General Index1689.18
Change (%)-3.71%
T. Volume613373688
T. Companies 64

MENA stock markets close - March 6, 2012

ExchangeStatus IndexChange
TASI (Saudi Stock Market)
DFM (Dubai Financial Market)
ADX (Abudhabi Securities Exchange)
KSE (Kuwait Stock Exchange)
BSE (Bahrain Stock Exchange)
MSM (Muscat Securities Market)
QE (Qatar Exchange)
LSE (Beirut Stock Exchange)
EGX 30 (Egypt Exchange)
ASE (Amman Stock Exchange)
TUNINDEX (Tunisia Stock Exchange)
CB (Casablanca Stock Exchange)
PSE (Palestine Securities Exchange)

Persian Gulf Stocks: Arabtec, Du and Boubyan Bank in Kuwait - Bloomberg

Dubai’s DFM General Index (DFMGI) fell 3.7 percent, the most since February 2011, to 1,689.18 at the 2 p.m. close in the emirate. Abu Dhabi’s ADX General Index (ADSMI) retreated for a second day, dropping 0.6 percent.

Dubai eyes funds for airport, goes slow on new facility | Alrroya

Dubai is examining ways of raising finances to expand its aviation infrastructure, a plan focused on its existing airport as it goes slow on a $34 billion new facility designed to become the biggest in the world.

The emirate is in talks with external consultants to come up with a structure to access the financial market, Dubai Airports Chief Executive Paul Griffiths told Reuters in an interview.

"They are going to come up with a structure that will enable us to access the financial market in the most cost-effective way, which we've not been able to do as a purely government-owned department," he said.

Bahrain Islamic Bank ratings cut

Moody's has cut Bahrain Islamic Bank's (BisB) supported issuer ratings to Ba3 / Not Prime from Ba1 / Not Prime following the rating agency's review for downgrade initiated in June last year.

In addition, Moody's has set the bank financial strength rating of BisB at E+, but changed its mapping on the long term scale to B3 from B1. All ratings carry a negative outlook, it added.

According to Moody's, the re-mapping of the BCA to B3 from B1 will reflect the recently aborted merger with Al-Salam Bank (ASBB). The bank faces renewed uncertainty regarding its future capital position.

Dubai Shares Head for Biggest Drop Since August After Rally - Bloomberg

Dubai’s stocks headed for the biggest drop in almost seven months on bets this year’s rally was overdone and as investors awaited a report that may confirm Europe’s economy contracted in the fourth quarter.
Emaar Properties PJSC (EMAAR), developer of the world’s tallest skyscraper, dropped to the lowest intraday level in two weeks. Dubai Financial Market PJSC, the only publicly traded Gulf Arab stock market, declined 4.8 percent. The DFM General Index (DFMGI) fell 2.6 percent, set for the biggest decrease since Aug. 7, to 1,708.98 at 12:42 p.m. in the emirate. The measure, which entered a bull market in February, surged 31 percent from a January low.
“Investors are booking some of their profits on the Dubai Financial Market after a series of good performance,” said Samer Darwiche, a Dubai-based analyst at Gulfmena Investments.

Year of unrest in Bahrain cost businesses up to $800 million

Businesses in Bahrain have lost up to $800 million over the past 12 months due to civil unrest which has rippled across the country, a report revealed this week.

About $200 million of the sum were losses as a direct impact of the anti-government uprising in Bahrain, while the remaining $600 million were indirect losses occurring in its aftermath, according to finding reported by Gulf Daily News.

“Revival depends on survival and we need to help our Bahraini businessmen, small and big, through compensation to ensure that they are able to continue,” Dalal Al Zayed, legislative and legal affairs committee chairman said after the report was presented the country’s National Assembly on Monday.

UPDATE 1-UAE telco du Q4 profit rises 15 pct | Reuters

UAE telecoms operator du on Tuesday reported a 15.4 percent rise in its fourth-quarter net profit before royalty payments, beating analysts estimates, as the telco added more subscribers during the quarter.

Du made a net profit before royalty of 497.4 million dirhams ($135.42 million), compared with a profit of 430.9 million dirhams in the same period a year ago, it said in a statement. It did not provide a net profit figure after royalty payments for the quarter.

Analysts polled by Reuters on average expected the firm to post a quarterly net profit of 270.7 million dirhams.

Arabtec Stake Boost May Signal Aabar Seeks Control, ING Says - Bloomberg

Aabar Investments PJSC (AABAR) raising its stake in Arabtec Holding Co. (ARTC) may signal its intention to take control of the Dubai builder after pulling a $1.74 billion bid two years ago, according to ING Investment Management.
Aabar, the Abu Dhabi government company which owns stakes in Daimler AG (DAI) and UniCredit SpA (UCG), increased its ownership in the United Arab Emirates’ biggest construction company to 5.28 percent, according to data posted on Dubai’s stock market. The shareholding is listed under Aabar Petroleum Investments Co., which in 2008 sold most of its energy assets to Mubadala Development Co., an investment company owned by the Abu Dhabi government. Emirates Construction Material Co. owns a 5.03 percent stake, the data shows.
“It’s obvious from an investment size perspective that Aabar will not stop at 5.28 percent,” said Yazan Abdeen, who helps oversee about $250 million as a fund manager at ING in Dubai. “So it has already acquired more and is in the consolidation phase now. I expect this percentage will increase considerably, which will entitle Aabar for control of Arabtec.”

Gulf Daily News » Dubai planning to raise funds by selling debt

Dubai plans to raise funds by selling debt based on future revenues at Dubai Duty Free, one of the world's largest airport retailers, sources said.

The emirate's finance department is working in tandem with the Investment Corporation of Dubai (ICD) which owns the retail operator, said the sources.

Dubai is planning to raise at least $500 million from the securitisation of receipts, one banking source said, adding requests for proposals for the transaction were sent to banks and a final mandate was yet to be announced.

Are the fun times back for the Dubai Financial Market, bring on the IPOs? « ArabianMoney

Up 30 per cent from the seven-year low of only mid-January this year and the Dubai Financial Market has delivered the best performance in the world bar Egypt for 2012. Can it keep it up? And when will we see the first initial public offering?

UAE veterans can recall a very different world in November 2004 when Aldar Properties went public raising $103 billion, at the time more than the GDP of the country. Banks made half-a-billion in interest on IPO loans in a matter of days, and the stock market continued to rise.

Arabian investors remain skeptical of hedge funds « ArabianMoney

It will be five years this August that quantitative hedge funds suddenly dived losing 50 per cent of their net asset value, and they have been out of fashion ever since.

However these funds – which base their investment on the mathmatics of the famous rocket scientists of the sector – are coming back into favour if only because of their recent outperformance of their deadly rivals the fundamental hedge funds that operate on a more intuitive basis.

gulfnews : Hedge funds cut bullish gas bets most since June

Hedge funds reduced bullish bets on natural gas by the most in eight months as forecasts for warmer-than-usual weather in the eastern US signalled a drop in heating-fuel use with supplies near a seasonal record.
Money managers cut wagers on rising prices for the first time in seven weeks, reducing positions by 56 per cent in the seven days ended February 28, according to the Commodity Futures Trading Commission's Commitments of Traders report. It was the biggest decline since June 28.
Gas fell 4.1 per cent in the week covered by the report as meteorologists predicted above-normal temperatures east of the Rocky Mountains through mid-March. Inventories may total 2.34 trillion cubic feet (0.07 cubic metres) by the end of the month, according to the Energy Management Institute in New York, an advisory company. That would be an all-time high for this time of year, Energy Department data going back to 1993 show.

gulfnews : Tabreed share price leap stumps analysts

The astronomical rise in Tabreed's share price has led to confusion over what is driving intense buying interest in the Abu Dhabi-based utilities firm.
Tabreed, which is also known as the National Central Cooling Company, has seen its stock value gain 427 per cent from its low on January 16 — the company's share price has risen from 40 fils to Dh2.13 in seven weeks — although the reasons behind the surge are unclear.
Several listed companies — including construction firm Arabtec — have experienced significant upwards movement in recent weeks as the Dubai Financial Market continues its bull run. However, such large swings tend to create speculation as analysts and investors look for answers.

Call to check Sharia finance scholars - The National

Islamic finance scholars should be regulated in line with other professionals such as lawyers and accountants, says David Gray, the director of supervision at the Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA).

Under DFSA rules, which apply to companies operating within the Dubai International Financial Centre framework, firms offering Islamic services must have a Sharia supervisory board made up of "competent" scholars.

The firms are subject to annual Sharia reviews and audits, and must follow standards set by the Accounting and Auditing Organisation for Islamic Financial Institutions. TheDFSA supervises these arrangements.

Pension funds take to London property - The National

Middle East pension funds are following private investors into the London property market.

Regional investors have doubled their share of property purchases in the UK capital in the three years to last year to about 12 per cent of all overseas investment, according to CBRE, a property services company. The trend is expected to push the price of prime property higher as sovereign wealth fund (SWF) purchases are fuelled by a strong oil price.

At the same time, the expanding middle class in many regional economies is creating bigger pension pots seeking the long-term investment yield offered by UK property, where commercial leases often run to 25 years.

South Korea oil deal makes Abu Dhabi history - The National

It might have been just three red polygons on a map of Abu Dhabi but to Young-Won Kang, the chief executive of Korea National Oil Corporation (Knoc), they represented a rare prize.

The odd-looking shapes, which together make up about a tenth of the emirate's land mass, depict exploration blocks for oil.

Joining Mr Kang at Abu Dhabi's InterContinental hotel yesterday was a top presidential adviser, a cabinet minister and a fleet of journalists who had flown all the way from Seoul to witness the historic deal.

Dubai penny stocks now look set for a fall - The National

There has been a rush of speculative money from retail investors into penny stocks in Dubai recently but the party may be near its end.

Penny stocks have had the biggest gains this year as investor sentiment has picked up and the Dubai Financial Market General Index has rallied by about 30 per cent in the year to date.

"Retail-favoured penny stocks (mostly small caps) are at risk of a sharp correction once momentum subsides," EFG-Hermes said in a statement.

Abu Dhabi bourse set to target institutions - The National

Reliance on retail investors is the Achilles heel of Abu Dhabi's stock market, said the newly appointed chief executive of the exchange.

Rashed Al Baloushi, who assumed the role on Sunday, said he aimed to encourage greater participation of institutional investors.

"One of the biggest weaknesses we have is that most of the trading activity comes from retail traders," Mr Al Baloushi said. "We need to develop and strengthen asset management activity. It is a challenge, but it is reachable."

Egypt: reserve fears ease, for now | beyondbrics –

Some relief for Egypt’s battered foreign currency reserves, which have plunged 57 per cent since the start of the uprising to overthrow former president Hosni Mubarak last January.

Net reserves fell in February, down by $680m, but that’s a significant slowdown from the average $1.8bn monthly decline recorded in the five previous months. It raises hopes that the flight of hard currency from the troubled country may be slowing as the prospects rise of a deal with the International Monetary Fund.

Last year, Egypt’s benchmark equity index lost half its value. But even amid the country’s political turmoil, heavy intervention by the central bank helped keep the pound steady, with losses against the US dollar of under 4 per cent last year.