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Thursday, 28 June 2012

gulfnews : Majid Al Futtaim said to get $3b bids for bonds

Majid Al Futtaim Holding LLC received $3 billion (Dh11 billion) in bids for the $500 million bonds it sold today, according to a banker familiar with the transaction.
Investors from the UK made up 36 per cent of the bids, while 25 per cent were from Europe, 19 per cent from the Middle East and 20 per cent from Asia, said the banker, who asked not to be identified because the information is private. Fund managers bought 70 per cent, banks 16 per cent, private lenders 11 per cent and insurance companies 3 per cent, the banker said.
The debt of the Dubai-based private company was priced to yield 5.25 per cent, or 389.7 basis points over the benchmark midswap rate, the banker said. JPMorgan Chase & Co, National Bank of Abu Dhabi, Barclays, Standard Chartered and UBS AG managed the sale.

Egypt’s equity dawn remains in doubt -

The election of a new Egyptian president has raised hopes among investors that the country’s once rapidly growing economy will finally begin to right itself.
Its sagging stock market has jumped nearly 17 per cent from where it was before Sunday’s announcement that the Muslim Brotherhood’s Mohamed Morsi had won the contest.
Many market analysts, though, caution that Egypt’s troubles are far from over. It suffers from low foreign reserves and a yawning budget deficit.

London Whale Trade Explodes, Current Estimate of JP Morgan Losses as High as $9 Billion « naked capitalism

So again, what did Dimon know when? Under the hot lights at the House Financial Services Committee, he repeatedly brushed off the losses on the failed Chief Investment Office trades as no biggie. Let us remind readers that the size of the CIO’s balance sheet would make it the 8th largest bank in the US and it was running half of JPM’s total risk exposures, so it’s hard to see the failure of oversight as something to be waived off. And now it turns out the losses are going to clock in at a much higher number than the $2 billion that Dimon kept repeating in the hearings. Recall he refused to update that number, maintaining the public would have to wait for the bank’s second quarter earnings release (admittedly, he did signal the final result could come in much higher). Funny that they’ve now leaked out well in advance of that date. Per the New York Times’ Dealbook (hat tip Richard Smith):

Qatar iron man faces off with Glencore | Reuters

Ahmad al-Sayed, the Qatari investment manager holding the fate of Glencore's (GLEN.L) $26 billion takeover of Xstrata (XTA.L) in his hands, is known as an aggressive negotiator who relishes the big deal.

The lawyer was formerly general counsel at Qatar Investment Authority (QIA), the sovereign wealth fund of the gas-rich Gulf state, before taking the helm as chief executive of Qatar Holding in 2008.

Well-liked and trusted by Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim al-Thani, the Qatari prime minister who is also chief executive of QIA and chairman of Qatar Holding, he has significant influence at the top level where decisions are made.

Timur Kuran weighs the legacy of Islam’s economic divergence from the West

How is it that Islamic civilization, which flourished in the 10th century while Europe was still mired in the Dark Ages, found itself far behind the West economically and politically at the beginning of the 20th?
That question has long been subject to broad-brush speculation by scholars, but Duke University economist Timur Kuran has forgone any hand waving to argue that a special mix of trade and legal traditions can explain why ─░stanbul languished while London and Antwerp bloomed. In his critically acclaimed book “The Long Divergence: How Islamic Law Held Back the Middle East,” Kuran summons a meticulous knowledge of economics, history and Islamic law to find the many roots of that slow-emerging disparity: Islamic inheritance law dispersed wealth among the family rather than heaping it on first sons, trade laws nullified commercial partnerships after a single signatory’s death and Middle Eastern trusts were inextricably bound to their founding mandate unlike European corporations, which were dynamic and self-governing. These reasons and more, argues Kuran, meant that capital remained diffuse in the Middle East while the West rose to commercial might unchallenged.

Bank Al Khair ex-CEO convicted of embezzlement | Reuters

A Bahraini court has sentenced the former chief executive of Bank Al Khair in absentia to four years in jail for embezzlement and squandering the bank's funds, the Islamic lender said.

It said the Criminal Court of Bahrain also convicted Majid Al-Refai at a hearing on Tuesday of destroying bank documents as well as preventing shareholders and authorised entities from accessing bank records.

Rifai said in an emailed statement to Reuters on Thursday that he was aware of the verdict and denied all charges.

MENA stock markets close - June 28, 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)

First Capital of Switzerland Investment Bank (FCSIB) Named as the Best Investment Bank 2012 in the UAE - MarketWatch

First Capital of Switzerland Investment Bank (FCSIB) has been recognized as the "Best Investment Bank in the UAE" for 2012 by critically acclaimed magazine World Finance.

World Finance's esteemed panel, with input from its readers, determined the winners based on a series of criteria that are based on strategies, ideas and innovations signifying achievements and best practices in a particular field. These awards are the only industry honors based on voter participation.

First Capital of Switzerland (FCS) Group CEO Abdulrahman Al Ansari said: "The last few years have been difficult for the financial industry and investment banking sector in particular. This award comes as a genuine byline for our continued endeavors to be a market leader in setting the pace for a positive shift in the financial industry in the Middle East. This award reestablishes our pledge to our valued clients and stakeholders to provide optimal, customized solutions to place them in the best possible position within the market."

Glencore Courts Qatar as Xstrata Tweaks Merger Pay - Bloomberg

Glencore International Plc and Xstrata Plc (XTA), seeking to salvage the year’s biggest takeover, moved to appease dissident investors who have threatened to derail the 16 billion-pound ($25 billion) deal.
Glencore yesterday met with Xstrata’s second-biggest shareholder, Qatar Holding LLC, over the sovereign wealth fund’s call for a 16 percent increase in the commodity trader’s bid, people familiar with the London talks said. Xstrata revised payments for executives intended to keep them at the combined company by adding a link to performance and made all bonuses payable in shares after holders attacked them as excessive.

'Sluggish' U.S. gaming worries Moody's Investor Service -

Moody's Investors Service expressed a cautious view of the U.S. casino market Wednesday, warning that weak gaming revenues and downward consumer trends could place several companies, including Caesars Entertainment Corp. and CityCenter Holdings, "at great risk."
Officials from the companies didn't dispute Moody's assessment that the U.S. gaming market has stalled but rejected notions the businesses are in trouble.
"Our debt is old news," Caesars Entertainment Senior Vice President Jan Jones said of the company's nearly $20 billion in long-term debt, an industry high. "It's the same debt we've had for the last five years, and we don't have any maturities coming due any time soon. The disappointment about the report is that Moody's is correct, the market is sluggish right now."
Moody's said consumer confidence has weakened, payroll expansion has slowed, and retail sales have softened, slowing the improvements in U.S. gaming revenues.

Persian Gulf Stocks: Industries Qatar and Qatar Telecom Moved - Bloomberg

Qatar’s QE Index (DSM) fell 0.5 percent to 8,123.02, the lowest since Aug. 24, at the close in Doha. The measure is down 7.5 percent this year. Dubai’s benchmark DFM General Index (DFMGI) was little changed and Saudi Arabia (SABIC)’s market was closed for the weekend.

Exclusive: Saudi readies oil line to counter Iran Hormuz threat | Reuters

Saudi Arabia has reopened an old oil pipeline built by Iraq to bypass Gulf shipping lanes, giving Riyadh scope to export more of its crude from Red Sea terminals should Iran try to block the Strait of Hormuz, industry sources say.

The Iraqi Pipeline in Saudi Arabia (IPSA), laid across the kingdom in the 1980s after oil tankers were attacked in the Gulf by both sides during the Iran-Iraq war, has not carried Iraqi crude since Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait in 1990.

Saudi Arabia confiscated the pipeline in 2001 to compensate for debts owed by Baghdad and has used it to transport gas to power plants in the west of the country in the last few years.

Bahrain Sells $1.5B in 10-Year Bonds at Yield of 6.143% - Source -

The Kingdom of Bahrain sold a $1.5 billion, 10-year bond, at a yield of 6.143% to investors on Wednesday, according to investors familiar with the deal.

Specialty Food Makers Adopt a ‘Made in U.A.E.’ Label -

Rosso Vivo, a two-month-old artisanal pizzeria in Dubai, has the city’s Italian community talking. A tough crowd to please, they appear to have given the cozy restaurant their approval, returning in groups to enjoy a slice of Naples, the Italian city credited as the birthplace of pizza.

A lot about the Rosso Vivo pizzas is actually Neapolitan: the craft, the chef Raffaele Medaglia and even the bricks are shipped from Naples to build the oven.

One exception is the bocconcini mozzarella. It comes from the Italian Dairy Products factory, about 40 kilometers, or 25 miles, from Dubai, within an emerging industrial-free zone in the neighboring emirate of Sharjah.

Glencore Said to Meet Qatar for Talks on Xstrata Purchase - Bloomberg

Glencore International Plc met with Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund in London today to try to revive a 16 billion-pound ($25 billion) takeover of Xstrata Plc, three people with knowledge of the situation said.
Qatar Holding LLC late yesterday surprised global markets by objecting to the proposed deal, which would create the fourth-biggest mining company, because the price was too low. The fund has spent more than $4 billion amassing an 11 percent Xstrata stake this year. Its stance adds to investor opposition to the transaction and raises concern the deal will fail.
Glencore, headed by CEO Ivan Glasenberg, seen here, today said it’s considering a proposal put to its board from Xstrata about changes to the payments. Photographer: Andrey Rudakov/Bloomberg
“This is a seismic development that has almost certainly caught Glencore off guard,” Liberum Capital Ltd. analysts wrote in a note today, referring to Qatar’s stand. “We firmly expect Glencore (GLEN)’s response will be that the economics don’t support a merger at 3.25 and that it is opposed to sweetening its offer.”