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Thursday, 25 July 2013

EM bonds: hold those obituaries | beyondbrics

EM bonds: hold those obituaries | beyondbrics:

To paraphrase that famous quote from Mark Twain, the reports of the death of investor interest in emerging market bonds appear to have been greatly exaggerated.

For proof, look no look further than the spate of issues so far this month. On Wednesday, Bahrain successfully sold $1.5bn of bonds, joining Indonesia, Nigeria and Mexico’s Pemex in tapping the market following June’s market rout.

Bahrain, which has been rattled by widespread unrest since the Arab Spring, is one of the only countries in the Gulf forecast to run a fiscal deficit this year. Despite this, and the move by Moody’s last month to put the country on review for a possible downgrade, Bahrain was able to sell $1.5bn of 10-year notes at a yield of 6.2 per cent. That’s only a hair higher than the 6.143 per cent it paid for its $1.5bn issue last year."

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Moscow Ranked Second Most Costly City for Expats | Business | The Moscow Times

Moscow Ranked Second Most Costly City for Expats | Business | The Moscow Times:

2013 Cost of Living Comparisons of Select Cities
In U.S. Dollars (purchases made at medium-priced establishments)
Tokyo       N'djamena    SingaporeHong     Kong    GenevaZurichBernSydney
Rent of a luxury two-bedroom unfurnished apartment (per month)                 6500.004600.004513.34NA3794.947091.694349.743914.772686.512551.42
Rent of a luxury three-bedroom unfurnished house (per month)15000.008000.007199.862244.627266.9113538.687068.335980.89NA5163.64
Cinema, international release, 1 seat10.4211.6019.34NA9.2811.6018.4820.6618.9519.62
Pair of blue jeans204.41169.13135.40NA129.11115.92141.26141.26138.00113.55
1 issue of international daily newspaper5.429.955.376.943.633.874.354.354.356.20
1 cup of coffee, including service3.888.296.983.064.845.676.525.984.685.16
Fast food hamburger meal20.06*6.477.3125.51*5.613.5412.5112.5112.519.2
1 liter of gasoline, unleaded 95 octane0.631.041.740.981.762.
Pasteurized whole milk, above 2.5% fat (1liter)3.187.593.052.752.623.121.741.741.742.67
1 liter of soda2.141.771.921.631.131.021.601.601.602.15
*In Luanda and Ndjamena this category was replaced by a club sandwich and soda meal in the absence of any comparable fast food outlets.
Source: Mercer's 2013 Cost of Living Survey

Read more:
The Moscow Times 

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Turkey: did protests hit tourism? | beyondbrics

Turkey: did protests hit tourism? | beyondbrics:

On the face of it, yes. Figures from Turkey’s tourism ministry show that arrivals in June were up 4.9 per cent on the same month in 2012, far slower than the double-digit growth of 2013 to date.

But dig into the figures, and it’s a different story.

On the face of it, it looks clear cut. February and March saw visitor arrivals to Turkey jumping by 27 and 26 per cent respectively, year on year. May was up 17 per cent. What happened in June? Protests."

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Medvedev: Russian economic growth rate 'insufficient' | Russia Beyond The Headlines

Medvedev: Russian economic growth rate 'insufficient' | Russia Beyond The Headlines:

"Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev is dissatisfied with Russia's economic growth in the first half of the year.
"The rate declined in the first half of the year," Medvedev said at a government meeting on Thursday.
"The figures are nothing to rejoice about," he said, adding: "We understand full well that the pace of growth is insufficient.""

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Hungary: new airline hawkish on detail | beyondbrics

Hungary: new airline hawkish on detail | beyondbrics:

Not many new airlines introduce themselves with a language lesson and explanations of cultural symbolism. But then, Hungary’s newest carrier seems determined to set itself apart from the bargain-basement airlines that have emerged around Europe in the past decade.

Solyom Hungarian Airways positively shuns the no-frills approach, saying its operating model will be that of a “traditional network airline” with two passenger classes on short-range flights and three on long-haul. It wants to expand fast. But there are a few unanswered questions so far…

First, here’s what we know: Solyom plans to fly to 31 destinations this year, with the first six Boeing 737-500 aircraft to be taken by the airline “soon”."

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Cbonds.Info - S&P: Ukraine Agri-Business Creativ Assigned 'B-' Rating After Loan Extension; Outlook Positive

Cbonds.Info - S&P: Ukraine Agri-Business Creativ Assigned 'B-' Rating After Loan Extension; Outlook Positive:

"Standard & Poor's Ratings Services today assigned its 'B-' long-term corporate credit rating to Ukraine-based agri-business Creativ Group OJSC. The outlook is positive.

At the same time, we withdrew our preliminary 'B-' issue rating and our recovery rating of '4' on the proposed $400 million senior notes that were not issued.

The rating on Creativ is based on our assessment of the group's business risk profile as "weak" and its financial risk profile as "highly leveraged.""

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Alliance Group Denies Rosneft Oil Asset Sale | Business | The Moscow Times

Alliance Group Denies Rosneft Oil Asset Sale | Business | The Moscow Times:

"Alliance Group, a Russian-based holding company with Far East aviation and natural resource assets, has denied reports that it is negotiating the sale of its oil assets to state-owned oil giant Rosneft, news reports said Thursday.

Vedomosti had previously reported that Rosneft would buy shares in the mid-sized Stockholm-registered Alliance Oil Company, as well as the Khabarovsk oil refinery, one of the largest refineries in the Far East, and Alliance Group's oil exploration joint venture with Spanish company Repsol.

Shares in a joint gas retail venture with Shell are not on the table and are likely to be purchased by Gazprom, Vedomosti reported, citing sources close to Alliance Group and the government."

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MIDEAST STOCKS-UAE mkts resume gains in retail-driven trading; Egypt slips | Reuters

MIDEAST STOCKS-UAE mkts resume gains in retail-driven trading; Egypt slips | Reuters:

"UAE markets resumed gains on Thursday in retail dominated trading and most Gulf bourses climbed while Egypt extended losses on fears that violence could escalate further in response to the military's call for mass rallies on Friday.

Dubai's index climbed 0.1 percent, resuming gains after reaching a near five-year high on Tuesday.

It rallied 13.3 percent in July, with trading dominated in a few stocks. Shares in contractor Drake and Scull jumped 5.4 percent to new all-time high on speculation a strategic investor could buy a major stake in the firm, with builder Arabtec viewed by analysts as a possible buyer."

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IMF Loan: Is It Good Or Bad News for Tunisia? | MEP

IMF Loan: Is It Good Or Bad News for Tunisia? | MEP, Middle East Perspectives from Dubai to Rabat:

The Tunisian government and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) recently reached an agreement on the long-awaited $1.8 billion stand-by loan.

The agreement was officially announced Friday 7 June.

The benefits of this loan are seen by many as essential to overcome our financial deficit. Others accuse the IMF of interfering in Tunisia’s sovereignty and forcing new economic policies. As a young Tunisian, hearing mixed reactions to this agreement domestically, I wondered what this would mean for the economic future of Tunisia. So I set out to find out more."

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Ukraine's banking sector sees UAH 120 m in profit in June, NBU

Ukraine's banking sector sees UAH 120 m in profit in June, NBU:

"Ukraine's banking system in June posted a profit of UAH 120 million, according to a posting on the web site of the National Bank of Ukraine (NBU).

"In H1, 2013 the revenues of Ukraine's banks grew by 9.4% year-over-year and totaled UAH 78.491 billion. Expenditures… increased by 10.1% and were UAH 77.31 billion. The profit of the banking system as of July 1, 2013 was UAH 1.181 billion," reads the report.

As a source in the government's circles told Interfax-Ukraine, the volatility of the profit in H1 is completely connected with formation of reserves by just one bank and does not indicate a general tendency in the banking industry.

As reported, the profit of the Ukrainian banks in January was UAH 580 million; in February – UAH 208 million; UAH 2.338 billion in March; UAH 961 million in April; and UAH 120 million in June. A loss was seen only in May – UAH 3.026 billion.

The profit of the banking system in H1, 2012 was UAH 1.558 billion, while in June of that year the loss was UAH 335 million."

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FGB Jumps to Record on U.A.E. Loan-Growth Bets: Abu Dhabi Mover - Bloomberg

FGB Jumps to Record on U.A.E. Loan-Growth Bets: Abu Dhabi Mover - Bloomberg:

"First Gulf Bank PJSC (FGB) surged to a record on bets the United Arab Emirates lender, whose second-quarter profit beat analysts’ estimates, will benefit from a recovery in loan growth in the country.
Shares of the bank known as FGB, which is controlled by Abu Dhabi’s ruling family, increased 3.6 percent, the most since May 2001, to 17.45 dirhams at the close in Abu Dhabi. The stock was the biggest gainer on the Bloomberg GCC 200 Index (BGCC200) and the benchmark ADX General Index (ADSMI), which climbed 1.1 percent, taking its gain this week to 2.3 percent.
FGB yesterday reported quarterly net income of 1.17 billion dirhams ($319 million), beating the 1.08 billion-dirham average estimate of six analysts compiled by Bloomberg. Net interest income and income from Islamic financing grew 9 percent, according to its financial statement. The bank’s net interest margin of 3.6 percent compares with 2.54 percent for Commercial Bank of Qatar QSC, whose shares have retreated 4.7% since it reported results yesterday."

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Kozhara: Ukraine to be ready for signing Association in September - ForUm

Kozhara: Ukraine to be ready for signing Association in September - ForUm:

"Ukraine will decide in September problematic issues required to sign the Association Agreement with the European Union, foreign minister of Ukraine Leonid Kozhara predicts.

"Ukraine together with the European Commission worked out the Action Plan, which is being implemented now. This action plan is actually implemented by 95%, there are only a few problematic issues that we, I think, will close in September," the minister said in interview.

He told that it is about a number of bills relating to the prosecutor's office, elections, as well as the implementation of anti-corruption legislation.

Foreign minister noted that the anti-discrimination bill has not been passed by Parliament. "It is difficult to predict how the Verkhovna Rada will respond to anti-discrimination law. So far the government has failed to provide a positive consideration of the bill in the Parliament," the minister said, adding that the bill does not directly concern the signing of the Association Agreement, however, it is directly related to the dialogue on visa liberalization with the EU.

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Yandex Co-Founder Ilya Segalovich in Coma, Death Report Denied | Business | The Moscow Times

Yandex Co-Founder Ilya Segalovich in Coma, Death Report Denied | Business | The Moscow Times:

Guennadi Moukine / MT
Ilya Segalovich
Ilya Segalovich, the co-founder and chief technology officer of Internet group Yandex, is in a coma, suffering with complications from cancer, the company's chief executive said on Thursday.

The company earlier announced the death of Segalovich, aged 48, who had been diagnosed with a treatable form of cancer.

"We want to clarify an earlier statement that the company put out. We have since learnt that Ilya is in coma and on life support although not showing any brain function. Our thoughts are with him at this time," Arkady Volozh said on a conference call."

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Abu Dhabi expects gas to drive region -

Abu Dhabi expects gas to drive region -

"Natural gas is expected to play a major role in meeting the energy demands from Middle East and North African consumers, the Abu Dhabi National Oil Co. said.

The Abu Dhabi company said it was laying the foundation for an international petroleum conference in November. ADNOC said the focus of the conference would be the general shift toward natural gas in the region.

The official Emirates News Agency reports companies in the Middle East and North Africa account for 42 percent of the global natural gas reserves. It said it expects demand for natural gas to increase as regional economies look for cleaner alternatives to coal and oil."

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Spending Abroad by Russians to Hit $42 Billion in 2013 | Business | The Moscow Times

Spending Abroad by Russians to Hit $42 Billion in 2013 | Business | The Moscow Times:

"Russians will spend 1.7 trillion rubles ($42 billion) abroad in 2013, which represents an increase of 13 percent over last year according to an annual study Citibank released Thursday, though half that amount is being spent online.

But while spending abroad continues to increase annually, growth is slowing down in some categories. Experts project that in the future spending will stabilize near current levels, while the structure of this spending will undergo a transformation.

Citibank compiled the data based on the statistics of at least 500,000 of its clients' credit card purchases. The clients were 22 or older with a monthly income of more than 9,000 rubles and from one of Russia's 11 largest cities. The data from the first six months of 2013 and trends over the past three years were used to forecast spending abroad for the whole of 2013."

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CORRECTED-UPDATE 1-UAE telco du sets special dividend after Q2 profit gain | Reuters

CORRECTED-UPDATE 1-UAE telco du sets special dividend after Q2 profit gain | Reuters:

"Du, the United Arab Emirates' second biggest telecommunications operator, said it would pay 1 billion dirhams ($272.3 million) to shareholders via special and interim dividends, after it posted a 46 percent rise in second-quarter net profit on Thursday.

The firm, which ended rival Etisalat's domestic monopoly in 2007, made a net profit after royalties of 474 million dirhams in the three months to June 30, up from 326 million in the year-earlier period.

One analyst polled by Reuters had forecast du would make a quarterly profit of 465.7 million dirhams for the second quarter."

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Qatar, Kuwait said to eye stake in Lloyds Bank - Banking & Finance -

Qatar, Kuwait said to eye stake in Lloyds Bank - Banking & Finance -

"Qatar and Kuwait are said to be interested in buying a stake in Lloyds Banking Group when the UK government sells its 39 percent holding, worth about £20bn ($30.7bn).
The government plans to sell its stake in the UK’s largest bank by market share in three tranches.
The first is expected to be released within weeks but only offered to existing institutional investors including L&G, Blackrock, Norges, Fidelity, Schroders and Standard Life, at a 5-10 percent discount, according to London’s Daily Mail."

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Kuwait's Wataniya reverses profit decline -

Kuwait's Wataniya reverses profit decline -

"Wataniya, Kuwait's second-biggest telecoms operator, reported a 20 percent rise in second-quarter profit on Thursday, beating analysts' estimates and ending its earnings decline.
The subsidiary of Ooredoo (Qatar Telecom) had reported falling profits in the preceding six quarters. In March it appointed Abdulaziz Fakhroo as chief executive, its third CEO in less than a year.
Wataniya made a net profit of KD22.91m ($80.4m) in the three months to June 30, up from KD19.08m in the same period a year ago, a statement to the stock exchange showed. It did not give further earnings details."

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Abu Dhabi Wealth Fund May Be Interested in Batista EBX Assets - Bloomberg

Abu Dhabi Wealth Fund May Be Interested in Batista EBX Assets - Bloomberg:

"Mubadala Development Co., the Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth fund that restructured a $2 billion investment in Eike Batista’s EBX Group Co., may be interested in more of the billionaire’s businesses after their value slumped.
Many of the commodities holding company’s assets have significant value to a number of parties including Mubadala, according to an e-mailed response to questions today from a fund spokesman, who asked not to be identified citing company policy.
EBX agreed to redeem a “significant portion” of Mubadala’s initial investment this month and give “enhanced protection” to remaining funds. Batista’s six publicly traded companies have lost about $10 billion in market value this year as oil company OGX Petroleo & Gas Participacoes (OGXP3) SA missed output targets and abandoned fields previously declared commercial."

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PrivatBank climbs in 2013 Top 1,000 ranking, state banks down

PrivatBank climbs in 2013 Top 1,000 ranking, state banks down:

"Private PrivatBank, the largest Ukrainian bank in terms of assets, has climbed from 334th to 315th position in the annual Top 1,000 ranking of the Banker magazine, published by the Financial Times Ltd, due to the growth of Tier 1 capital from $2.323 billion to $2.569 billion.

At the same time, state-controlled Ukreximbank and Oschadbank lost several positions, as Oschadbank's capital remained unchanged at $2.005 billion and that of Ukreximbank increased from $2.045 billion to $2.06 billion.

As a result, Ukreximbank in the Top 1,000 ranking dropped from 362nd to 375th position, and Oschadbank - from 367th to 382nd."

'via Blog this' | EU’s Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area vs. Russia’s Customs Union: Kiev Contemplating | EU’s Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area vs. Russia’s Customs Union: Kiev Contemplating:
This article explores the benefits of trade cooperation options which are still posed before Ukraine: the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area with the European Union and the Customs Union with Russia.
Brussels and Kiev have initialled the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area in July 2012 and this became an important moment in EU-Ukraine bilateral relations. The purpose of DCFTA is for EU and Ukraine to liberalize their trade by lifting customs tariffs, removing import quotas, and facilitating legal aspects of trade. On average 99 percent of export-import duties will be eliminated. It will also adjust the special and technical requirements towards goods and harmonize customs processes.
Ukraine in turn will have to adjust her trade laws and standards according to the EU’s ones. Brussels also took into account the agricultural dominance of Ukrainian exports and granted duty free quotas for some sensitive products, such as beef, pork, poultry and cereals. While for other types of products EU has foreseen a progressive elimination of customs duties that will occur during the ten years period. This is why the new cooperation between EU and Ukraine is more than just a free trade area and it was specifically designed to go deeper – it would tackle trade obstacles through Ukraine’s adoption of EU’s trade acquis, and be comprehensive – grasp trade in both goods and services.

Majid Al Futtaim Holding reports first half EBITDA up 11% -

Majid Al Futtaim Holding reports first half EBITDA up 11% - Business Intelligence Middle East - - News, analysis, reports:

"Majid Al Futtaim Holding LLC, the leading shopping mall, retail and leisure pioneer across the Middle East ‎released today its trading results for the half year ended 30 June 2013, announcing yet another period of strong performance of its business operations.

The company’s revenues reached AED 11.3 billion, a 10% increase on H1 2012, at the same time its EBITDA from recurring operations grew by 11% to reach AED 1.6 billion (US$436 million).

Majid Al Futtaim Holding continues to maintain a strong balance sheet with total assets valued at over AED 39 billion and a net debt of around AED 8.6 billion. An investment-grade rating of BBB was re-affirmed in 2013 by both Standard and Poor’s and Fitch Ratings, which is the highest credit rating assigned to any privately-held corporate in the Middle East."

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Crude Tumbles Most in More Than a Month on U.S. Output - Bloomberg

Crude Tumbles Most in More Than a Month on U.S. Output - Bloomberg:

"West Texas Intermediate crude fell the most in more than a month as U.S. output surged to a 22-year high last week and Chinese manufacturing contracted more than economists estimated.
Futures slid 1.7 percent after the Energy Information Administration said crude production rose 0.9 percent to 7.56 million barrels a day, the most since December 1990. Crude and fuel supplies declined, the report showed. The HSBC Holdings Plc and Markit Economics China manufacturing gauge came in at 47.7, according to a preliminary survey of purchasing managers. Analysts surveyed by Bloomberg forecast 48.2.
“There were good-sized supply draws but we still have a surplus,” said Tim Evans, an energy analyst at Citi Futures Perspective in New York. “We aren’t going to see a deficit anytime soon. The market has been paying a lot of attention to China recently so the weak Chinese data is also relevant.”"

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Gulf sukuk sales slow down - The National

Gulf sukuk sales slow down - The National:

"Arabian Gulf Islamic bond sales fell this year, compared with an increase in Asia, highlighting the reluctance of smaller businesses in the region to issue sukuk.

The number of Shariah-compliant bond offerings in the Gulf Cooperation Council has fallen 29 per cent in 2013 from a year earlier to 17, while Malaysian issuance increased 14 per cent to 230, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The value of sukuk sales in the GCC and Malaysia, home to the world's biggest sukuk market, has slumped as concern the Federal Reserve will scale back its bond-buying program deterred issuers.

Sovereign or quasi-government issuers, which prefer to sell bonds denominated in dollars to target international investors, dominate sales in the six-nation GCC, leaving them "more exposed" to global market fluctuations, said Rizwan Kanji, Dubai-based partner at King & Spalding. The drop in GCC sales mirrors worldwide bond-sale numbers, which are down 12 per cent in 2013."

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Adnoc sets 2020 as opening target for $10 billion Bab gas project - The National

Adnoc sets 2020 as opening target for $10 billion Bab gas project - The National:

"Abu Dhabi National Oil Company expects to start production at the Bab sour gasfield in 2020, and could award the lucrative construction tenders as soon as 2015.

The project will add more than 500 million standard cubic feet (scuf) of gas to Abu Dhabi's strained supplies, as Adnoc invests heavily to stave off a shortage.

Shell last month clinched the US$10 billion deal to develop Bab, the second sour gas project in Abu Dhabi. An interim agreement between Adnoc and the Anglo-Dutch major outlines the parameters of development."

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Nakheel seeks private finance to build Palm Jumeirah shopping mall - The National

Nakheel seeks private finance to build Palm Jumeirah shopping mall - The National:

"Nakheel is seeking private finance to build a Dh2.5 billion shopping mall on the Palm Jumeirah as the developer moves further into the retail and leisure sectors.

The Nakheel chairman, Ali Rashid Lootah, said yesterday that the company hoped to issue a tender for the 424,000 square metre shopping centre in the centre of the Palm Jumeirah by the end of the year.

He said the company was looking to develop the multibillion dirham scheme through a build, operate, transfer mechanism - a form of privately financed construction that is currently being used by Nakheel and its private finance partner, New Mall Limited, to build a 177,000 sq metre extension to the Dragon Mart shopping centre in Dubai."

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Dubai Crown Prince launches Islamic banking centre - The National

Dubai Crown Prince launches Islamic banking centre - The National:

"Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed, Crown Prince of Dubai, yesterday launched the Dubai Centre for Excellence in Islamic Banking and Finance as part of the drive to make the emirate the world's Islamic economy capital.

Students will be able to study for a master's and foundation certificates in Islamic banking and finance through the centre, which will be part of the Hamdan bin Mohammed e-University.

"The launch of the Dubai Centre For Excellence in Islamic Banking and Finance is a significant boost to the Islamic economy sector in the UAE, and a major step forward in the economic development agenda of Dubai," said Sheikh Hamdan, who is also chairman of Dubai Executive Council and president of the e-University."

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Bahrain $1.5 Billion Bond Joins Pemex as Yields Retreat - Bloomberg

Bahrain $1.5 Billion Bond Joins Pemex as Yields Retreat - Bloomberg:

"Bahrain sold $1.5 billion of bonds, joining issuers from Indonesia to Petroleos Mexicanos after developing-nation yields fell from a 21-month high.
Emerging-market borrowers raised at least $13 billion since July 10, when comments from Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke tempered speculation the U.S. would scale back stimulus. Yields had soared to 5.54 percent June 24, the highest since 2011, as Bernanke signaled he may reduce bond purchases that had fueled gains in developing-nation assets. Yields were at 4.78 percent yesterday, the Bloomberg USD Emerging Market Sovereign Bond Index showed."

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Saudi Gazette - GCC oil exports shift from US to Asia as ‘fracking’ broadens

Saudi Gazette - GCC oil exports shift from US to Asia as ‘fracking’ broadens:

"The negative impact of shale gas on the GCC won’t be significant for at least another 20 years, citing the high cost of shale gas and projected growth in Asia’s oil consumption, Kuwait-based Asiya Investments said in its new report titled “Shale gas impact on the GCC” released Wednesday.

In fact, the report noted that Asia’s oil consumption growth will outpace natural gas consumption during the same period. 

Commenting on the report, Asiya Investments’ economist Dana Al Fakir said: “There is much hype about shale oil and gas these days, and much of it is true, especially in the US. But on the global scene we see no major changes in the dynamics of Gulf oil in the next two decades. Consumption is projected to continue to grow driven by fossil-fuel hungry Asian economies. And the Gulf is successfully shifting their attention to cater to that demand.” "

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Saudi Gazette - Almarai picks banks to arrange hybrid sukuk

Saudi Gazette - Almarai picks banks to arrange hybrid sukuk:

"Saudi Arabian dairy producer Almarai Co. has chosen four banks to arrange the sale of a hybrid Islamic bond  (sukuk), banking sources said on Wednesday, in what would be a first for the Kingdom’s debt market.

The Gulf’s largest dairy firm has mandated the investment banking arm of Banque Saudi Fransi, BNP Paribas , HSBC’s Saudi Arabian unit and Standard Chartered to arrange the transaction, two bankers said.

The offering, which is not imminent, is likely to be denominated in Saudi riyals, although the company could opt to issue in dollars instead, four bankers said, speaking on condition of anonymity as the information is private."

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Saudi Gazette - Egypt’s outlook negative

Saudi Gazette - Egypt’s outlook negative:

"Moody’s Investors Service has Wednesday affirmed Egypt’s Caa1 government bond rating and is maintaining the negative rating outlook.

Therating affirmation is supported by the following considerations: (1) The substantial boost in Egypt’s international liquidity provided by the $12 billion external financial support package from the governments of Saudi Arabia (Aa3 stable), Kuwait (Aa2 stable) and the United Arab Emirates (Aa2 stable); (2) The road map laid out by the interim, military-installed government for a return to democracy by early 2014; and (3) The recent containment of the government’s debt-financing costs, below post-Revolution peaks.

The maintenance of the negative outlook on Egypt’s Caa1 rating is driven by Moody’s view of the country’s considerable economic and political challenges."

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