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Monday, 20 August 2012

Raymond J. Learsy: America's Increaed Reliance On Saudi Oil Manifests the Bankruptcy of Obama's Energy Policies

So far this year America's dependence on Saudi Arabian oil has increased by 20 percent, according to a front-page article in the New York Times ("U.S. Reliance On Saudi Oil Goes Back Up" 08.17.12). After nearly four years in office, that the United States is even more dependent on Middle East oil is shocking testimony to the failure of the Obama Administration's energy policies.

We are presently importing some 1.45 million barrels of oil per day from the Saudis and at the current U.S. price for crude at $96/bbl, transferring $138 million/day to a regime that treats its women as mere chattel and has transferred billions to Wahhabi madrassas and prayer halls to propagate their poisonous anti-Western fundamentalism -- as but one example, the Times of London had the eye-opening headline "Saudis Fund Balkan Muslims Spreading Hate of the West" (please see "If You See Something Say Something' - The Failed Times Square Bombing and The Price of Oil" 05.13.10).

Chart of the week: the listings race | beyondbrics

Emerging market stock exchanges have seen their capitalisations soar over the past decade, even after allowing for the setbacks of the last four years.

But the often-explosive growth in valuations has not always been matched by big expansions in the numbers of listed companies. While some exchanges have indeed seen healthy increases in listings  – notably Seoul, Shenzhen and Mumbai – others have seen little change or decline, as in Mexico City, Sao Paulo and Johannesburg. Why? Chart of the week takes a look?

According to the latest data of the World Federation of Exchanges in June 2012, there were approximately 46,000 listed companies in the world, about 40 per cent more than ten years earlier. Global stock market capitalisation more than doubled over the decade to nearly $50 trillion in June 2012.

Fund file: finding a key to Azerbaijan | beyondbrics

For some truly daring frontier market investors Azerbaijan is beginning to look interesting, as a report in Monday’s FTfm explains.

There is no doubt that it has long term potential. In the 19th century Baku became known as the Black Gold Capital of the world and it remains rich in undeveloped petroleum resources. Its position in central Asia between the east and the west on the Caspian sea put it firmly on the old Silk Road and also gave it a rich trading history.

But opportunities for modern day investors are much more limited. For a start off, there is no stock market. ”The local exchange only trades corporate bonds,” says Aivaras Abromavicius, partner at East Capital, the Swedish emerging markets specialist.

Time for the Brotherhood to deliver -

Egypt, and the world, seem to have underestimated Mohamed Morsi, the Islamist who in June’s historic vote became the country’s first democratically elected president. He was not, after all, the first choice of even his own party, formed by the powerful and secretive Muslim Brotherhood. But the army, in overall charge of the country since Hosni Mubarak was overthrown last year by the revolutionaries of Tahrir Square, has just had an up-close opportunity to take his measure.
Last week Mr Morsi sacked the army’s most senior commanders – Field Marshal Mohamed Hussein Tantawi, Mubarak’s defence minister for 20 years, and General Sami Anan, chief of staff and a close US ally, as well as the heads of the air force and navy, and intelligence chief Gen Murad Muwafi.

All eyes on Cairo as IMF comes to town - The National

Investors in the Arabian Gulf still glued to their BlackBerry screens during Eid Al Fitr will have to look overseas for clues to the events that will move markets when local exchanges reopen for trading on Wednesday.

Key will be the resolution of economic troubles in Egypt that have put a discount on Cairo's market since the country's uprising began last year.

Christine Lagarde arrives in the Egyptian capital on Wednesday at the head of a long-anticipated IMF mission to the Arab world's most populous nation.

Allow UAE debt prisoners to work to earn their freedom, embassy says - The National

Prisoners should be allowed to work so they can repay the debts that put them behind bars, the Indian Embassy has said.

"If they remain in jails they can't do anything and they further lose their capacity to repay," said MK Lokesh, the Indian ambassador.

There are about 1,300 Indians, including 40 women, in UAE jails, the embassy said. "We are thinking about how to help them so they can recover the loans they had taken and repay them," Mr Lokesh said.

India may introduce Islamic banking |

The government is considering introducing Islamic banking in the country. The Ministry of Finance recently asked the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to reconsider such a possibility.
The RBI formed a committee to look into the matter after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s visit to Malaysia in 2010, when Singh indicated that the government was open to the idea of a banking system that could address the long-standing concerns of the business section of a minority community.
Experts believe that in order to tap the immense investment potential of the oil-rich Middle East, it was in India’s interest to introduce Islamic banking.