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Saudi shares close lower on Saturday on petrochemical losses despite rising oil prices. Brent crude futures closed at $123.43 a barrel on Thursday before holidays began in major markets.
The all-share closes 0.4 percent lower at 7862.5 points and the petrochemical index closes 1.2 percent down at 7353.03 points.
Petrochemical giant Saudi Basic Industries Corp (SABIC) slips 0.9 percent.
The banking sector in the Gulf region experienced seven percent revenue growth in 2011 after revenues had stagnated the year before, according to a new study by The Boston Consulting Group (BCG).
The study, which covers 34 banks across Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, Oman, and the UAE, showed profits across the region also increased significantly in 2011 and reached the highest level since 2007.
Dr Reinhold Leichtfuss, senior partner and managing director in BCG's Dubai office, said: "The performance of Middle East banks in 2011 testifies to the strength of the GCC economies and banking systems.
Moody's Investors Service has placed on review for downgrade 14 financial institutions in Jordan, Lebanon, Pakistan and Ukraine, whose standalone credit assessments are currently positioned above their domicile countries' sovereign debt ratings.
Today's announcements reflect Moody's revised assessment of the linkage between the credit profiles of sovereigns and financial institutions globally, which is further discussed in the rating implementation guidance "How Sovereign Credit Quality May Affect Other Ratings" published on 13 February, 2012.
Consistent with this guidance, Moody's expects to position the standalone credit assessments of most banks globally at (or below) the rating of the sovereign where the bank is domiciled.
Dubai International Capital LLC, the owner of Travelodge Ltd., reached an accord to alter terms of $2.5 billion of liabilities as Dubai’s state-linked companies restructure debt after roiling global markets in 2009.
Lenders will get 2 percent interest on about $2.15 billion of debt that will be extended for five years, Dubai Holding LLC, the company’s parent, said in an e-mailed statement today. The maturities of a further $350 million will be extended for three years at an “unchanged contractual rate of interest.”
Optimism about the Persian Gulf’s tourism and trade hub, which was rescued from default in 2009 by a $20 billion loan from the United Arab Emirates’ central bank and Abu Dhabi, has surged after state-owned Dubai World restructured $25 billion of debt last year. Dubai Holding Commercial Operations Group LLC repaid a $500 million bond that matured in February.
Nicola Berlen loved his job as an outlet manager for an Italian restaurant in the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC). So when he was fired in January, almost three years after taking on the role because of a "change in management style", he was extremely upset.
Unhappy at the Dh28,000 settlement he was offered - almost Dh30,000 short of the Dh55,000 to Dh59,000 he was expecting - he decided to take his former employer to court.
And with the restaurant falling under the jurisdiction of the DIFC Courts, an international law court that handles financial cases, he filed a claim with the Small Claims Tribunal (SCT) in early February.