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Sunday, 6 January 2013

BBC News - Banks win more flexible liquidity rules from Basel

Internationals financial regulators have eased rules on minimum quantities of cash and liquid assets all banks must hold, set to take effect in 2015.

The agreement, by the body that oversees the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision, is an attempt to make banks less vulnerable to runs.

The new "liquidity coverage ratio" will be phased in from 2015 and take full effect four years later.
BBC News - Banks win more flexible liquidity rules from Basel

Fighting graft is UAE’s top priority | GulfNews.com

Fighting corruption tops priorities of the UAE’s political leadership and governmental authorities, especially financial control bodies, a senior offical said on Sunday.
“The UAE has joined the UN Anti-Corrruption Convention to fight graft, cooperate with other countries in every aspect of the fight against it including prevention, investigation and the prosecution of offenders,” the State Audit Bureau’s chairman, Hareb Bin Saeed Al Amimi.
Al Amimi added the UAE has several ant-graft authorities and legislations that convict offenders, “but our ambition far exceeds this and efforts are ongoing to upgrade these legislations as such the country studies anti-graft legislations and systems of advanced countries”.
Fighting graft is UAE’s top priority | GulfNews.com

Banks Said to Ask For 30-Day Delay as U.A.E Seeks Mortgage Caps - Bloomberg

Banks in the United Arab Emirates plan to ask the central bank to delay by 30 days implementing new caps on mortgage lending that were announced at the end of last year, according to two bankers familiar with the plan.
They also plan to speak with the central bank on new loan- to-value lending limits required for both citizens and foreigners, the bankers said, asking not to be identified because the discussions are private. Chief executive officers of U.A.E. banks that are part of the Emirates Banks Association met in Dubai late today to discuss the rules, they said. A spokesman for the association could not immediately be reached.
The central bank issued rules on Dec. 30 that restricted mortgages for expatriates to 50 percent of the value of the property for a first home and to 40 percent for the second. Banks may lend up to 70 percent of value to U.A.E citizens for the first dwelling and up to 60 percent for a second. Previously, there were no loan-to-value limits and some banks lent as much as 90 percent of the value of properties.
Banks Said to Ask For 30-Day Delay as U.A.E Seeks Mortgage Caps - Bloomberg

Abudhabi Securities Exchange close - January 6, 2013

General Index
Intraday  3 month  
 Daily Statistics
 Date06/01/2013
 General Index2709.67
 Change (%)0.88%
 Change23.68
 T. Volume136146491
 T. Companies 66
   Advanced16
   Declined5
   Unchanged6
   UnTraded39

Abudhabi Securities Exchange

MENA stock markets close - January 6, 2013

 ExchangeStatus IndexChange  
 
 TASI (Saudi Stock Market)
 
7004.71-0.08%  
 
 DFM (Dubai Financial Market)
 
1694.130.74%  
 
 ADX (Abudhabi Securities Exchange)
 
2709.670.88%  
 
 KSE (Kuwait Stock Exchange)
 
6014.160.16%  
 
 BSE (Bahrain Stock Exchange)
 
1064.140.18%  
 
 MSM (Muscat Securities Market)
 
-
 
5781.850.00%  
 
 QE (Qatar Exchange)
 
8636.440.79%  
 
 LSE (Beirut Stock Exchange)
 
1170.640.21%  
 
 EGX 30 (Egypt Exchange)
 
5733.97-0.01%  
 
 ASE (Amman Stock Exchange)
 
1985.95-0.11%  
 
 TUNINDEX (Tunisia Stock Exchange)
 
4654.330.26%  
 
 CB (Casablanca Stock Exchange)
 
9271.59-1.01%  
 
 PSE (Palestine Securities Exchange)
 
468.57-0.07%  

MENA stock markets

STOCKS NEWS MIDEAST-UAE, Qatar mkts hit multi-month highs ahead of Q4 - Yahoo! News Maktoob

Markets in Qatar and the United Arab Emirates hit multi-month highs as investors take positions ahead of
dividend and fourth-quarter earnings announcements.
In Dubai, Emaar Properties is the main support, rising 2.6 percent. Builder Arabtec and courier Aramex
climb 2.1 and 1.5 percent respectively.
"If Q4 numbers are solid, expect the market to continue doing well compared to the rest of the region - we saw retail investors trigger the rally and institutional buying followed, which is healthy," says Amer Khan, fund manager, Shuaa Asset Management.
STOCKS NEWS MIDEAST-UAE, Qatar mkts hit multi-month highs ahead of Q4 - Yahoo! News Maktoob

Tamweel Drops Most in 7 Weeks on DIB Takeover Offer: Dubai Mover - Bloomberg

Tamweel PJSC (TAMWEEL) fell the most in seven weeks after Dubai Islamic Bank PJSC (DIB)’s offer to take over the mortgage provider via a share swap was seen by Al Ramz Securities LLC as providing “limited upside” for the stock.
Shares of Tamweel fell 4.2 percent, the most since Nov. 19, to 1.14 dirhams at the close in Dubai. About 25 million shares were traded, five times the three-month daily average. Dubai Islamic, the United Arab Emirates’ biggest lender complying with Shariah banking laws, slipped 1 percent to 2.04 dirhams. Tamweel was the biggest decliner on a percentage basis on the benchmark DFM General Index, which gained 0.7 percent.
Tamweel shareholders will be offered 10 Dubai Islamic shares for every 18 held, the bank said Jan. 3. The fair value of Dubai Islamic and Tamweel shares was set at 2.25 dirhams and 1.25 dirhams, respectively. Tamweel shares, which resumed trading in May 2011 after being suspended in 2008, will be delisted from the stock market after completion of the takeover.
Tamweel Drops Most in 7 Weeks on DIB Takeover Offer: Dubai Mover - Bloomberg

Qatar- QNB Group Raises 2012 GDP Growth Estimate - MENAFN

QNB Group has revised its forecasts for Qatar's GDP growth in 2012-2013. The new forecasts take into account Q3 2012 GDP data, released last week by Qatar Statistics Authority as well as a slight downwards revision in oil price forecasts.

The Q3 GDP data was broadly in line with QNB Group's overall expectations, albeit slightly weaker in the oil and gas sector and stronger in the non-oil sector, QNB Group said in its weekly report.

As a result, QNB Group has revised up its estimate for overall real GDP growth in 2012 to 6.1% from 5.6% previously, and revised its 2013 forecast down marginally to 5.0%.
Qatar- QNB Group Raises 2012 GDP Growth Estimate - MENAFN

Dubai Stocks Advance to 9-Month High on Bets Profits to - Bloomberg

Dubai’s shares climbed to a nine- month high on bets some of the emirate’s biggest companies will post full-year profit growth as the economy recovers.
Emaar Properties PJSC (EMAAR), developer of the world’s tallest skyscraper, advanced to the highest level in almost three years. Emirates NBD, the biggest United Arab Emirates bank by assets, climbed 1.1 percent. The DFM General Index (DFMGI) rose 0.7 percent to 1,694.13, the highest since April 4, at the close in Dubai. The measure added 4.4 percent last week after U.S. lawmakers passed a bill averting the so-called fiscal cliff. Abu Dhabi shares increased 0.9 percent today.
“Expectations for annual results are strong,” said Nabil Al Rantisi, managing director of brokerage at Abu Dhabi-based Menacorp., who added that the U.S. budget news was also supporting shares.
Dubai Stocks Advance to 9-Month High on Bets Profits to - Bloomberg

HSBC U.A.E. Purchasing Index Climbs to 19-Month High on Demand - Businessweek

The HSBC United Arab Emirates Purchasing Managers Index rose to the highest level in 19 months in December on external demand and rising public spending, HSBC Holdings Plc (HSBA) said in a report e-mailed today.

The headline index of business conditions in the emirate’s non-oil producing private sector climbed two points to 55.6, the highest since May 2011, according to the report compiled by London-based Markit Economics. New orders rose three points month-on-month to 63, the highest in the PMI series’ three and a half year history, according to the report.

“While the U.A.E. as a whole appears to have gained speed, we suspect that it is Dubai’s export-orientated service sector that has led the way, completing what has been a year of strong economic recovery for the emirate,” Simon Williams and Liz Martins, Dubai-based HSBC economists, wrote in the report.
HSBC U.A.E. Purchasing Index Climbs to 19-Month High on Demand - Businessweek

Bahrain cllrs miffed over two-year new project ban - Construction - ArabianBusiness.com

Councillors in the Bahraini capital Manama have disputed an announcement that no major new developments will be launched in the city over the next two years, it was reported.
The lack of new developments was raised by Manama Municipal Council chairman Majeed Millad Al Jazeeri, who pointed out that the ministry had only spent 53 percent of its budget, the Gulf Daily News said.
"Municipal coffers are not retaken by the Finance Ministry if not used and this means that the ministry has the same budget given thrice with the same projects being listed repeatedly since 2009," he was quoted as saying.
Bahrain cllrs miffed over two-year new project ban - Construction - ArabianBusiness.com

Qatar banks given access to borrowers' credit histories - Banking & Finance - ArabianBusiness.com

Qatari banks will now have access to borrowers’ credit details and will be able to rank them in terms of creditworthiness.
The move, which the Qatar Credit Bureau (Qatar CB) hopes will reduce the number of write-offs and defaults, was reported on Saturday.
Qatar banks given access to borrowers' credit histories - Banking & Finance - ArabianBusiness.com

News Analysis: Regional woes damp UAE's growth potential | Breaking News, Other Sections, Home | philstar.com

Events in the Middle East during the first days of 2013 gave an indication about the tailwinds and the headwinds the United Arab Emirates will face in the next 12 months.

According to US investment bank Merrill Lynch, the UAE, a major oil exporter, will see its real economy growing by 3.2 percent in 2013, the same rate in last year. But the ongoing turmoil in Syria, the West's continuing pressure on Iran's nuclear program and newly emerged tit-for-tat politics between the Emirates and Egypt might put a cap on the UAE's growth potential.

Stock markets in Dubai and Abu Dhabi performed the best in the Gulf Arab region in 2012, and they entered with strong index gains into 2013, hitting a nine-month and one-month high, respectively, on Jan. 3.
News Analysis: Regional woes damp UAE's growth potential | philstar.com (Xinhua)

Banking Special: Kuwait Faces Long And Winding Recovery » Gulf Business

Kuwait’s investment environment remains in many ways moribund. Although the Kuwait Stock Exchange Index recorded increases during the middle part of 2012, the index did not move far from where it began the year. There remains little strong evidence that the weak market conditions of previous years have changed. In some of the troubled Kuwaiti companies, debt restructurings have been agreed but for these situations, solid performance over the medium-term will have to be demonstrated to convince the markets that the companies concerned are truly on the road to recovery.

In Kuwait, it is the governmental sector that leads the domestic economy and this relies heavily on the level and nature of domestic government investment.

Unfortunately, a protracted political standoff between the government and sections of the parliament led first to the blocking of government expenditure and eventually the resignation of the government and new elections. Unless the government is seen to have resolved these obstacles, private sector investment is likely to be lacklustre and market confidence subdued.
Banking Special: Kuwait Faces Long And Winding Recovery » Gulf Business

Saudi Arabia's $220bn spending spree - Politics & Economics - ArabianBusiness.com

If anyone believed that 2013 would be the year that Saudi Arabia would rein in its colossal spending plans, then last week’s budget announcement will have had them scratching their heads. On 29 December, the government confirmed that it would raise spending by 19 percent in 2013 to $219bn – making that hike the highest nominal increase in spending since records began.
The trend follows several years of expansionary budgets as the Saudi authorities attempt to stimulate the economy. Looking at the results for 2012, the plan appears to be working. Preliminary data for last year show that Saudi real GDP rose by 6.8 percent, with non-oil GDP – a vital sector given the country’s attempts to diversify away from hydrocarbons – growing by 7.5 percent. Last week’s announcement also corrected the previous GDP growth figures for 2011, which have now risen from 7 percent to 8.5 percent, the highest increase since 1979.
Saudi Arabia's $220bn spending spree - Politics & Economics - ArabianBusiness.com