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Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Egypt stock market hits pre-Arab Spring high | beyondbrics

Egypt stock market hits pre-Arab Spring high | beyondbrics:

"The Arab Spring is officially over, at least as far as Egyptian equities are concerned.

In a milestone of sorts, Egypt’s benchmark EGX30 stock index on Tuesday hit a new three-year high, surpassing for the first time its level on January 14, 2011. That was the day when a popular uprising felled Tunisian leader Zine el Abidine Ben Ali and set off frenzied speculation about which Arab leader would be next to fall.

Source: S&P Capital IQ

The return of share prices to pre-Arab Spring levels came as Egyptians began two days of voting on a draft constitution hailed as a stabilising force by the powerful military and its allies in the security apparatus and elite business circles."

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EconoMonitor : EconoMonitor » Beyond Borders: Growth Challenges for Emerging Markets

EconoMonitor : EconoMonitor » Beyond Borders: Growth Challenges for Emerging Markets:

"A number of emerging market economies  have been on a rollercoaster since the U.S. Federal Reserve announced last May the eventual tapering of its asset purchase program. This is another reminder of how susceptible these economies remain to economic conditions outside their borders.

Much of the market movements to date have been short term in nature. But emerging markets know the end-game – interest rates in advanced economies will eventually go up, reducing the cheap external financing they have benefited from until now. And this is not the only external factor weighing on the growth prospects of emerging markets."

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MIDEAST STOCKS-Egypt gains as vote on constitution starts; Gulf shares mixed | Reuters

MIDEAST STOCKS-Egypt gains as vote on constitution starts; Gulf shares mixed | Reuters:

"* Egypt buoyed by expectations for Sisi presidency

* But index tests, fails to break major chart resistance

* Arabtec jumps on Abu Dhabi contract

* Qatar rises for 11th straight session

* Saudi continues edging down from five-year high

By Nadia Saleem

DUBAI, Jan 14 (Reuters) - Egypt's stock market rose for a fourth consecutive session on Tuesday, to levels last seen before the 2011 revolution, as the country voted on a referendum that is a key step in its planned transition back to civilian rule. Gulf markets were mixed as some investors took profits.

Cairo's benchmark index climbed 1.1 percent to close at 7,196 points, a fresh three-year high. During the day it rose as high as 7,258 points, eclipsing the January 2011 peak of 7,248 points, but it fell back before the close, leaving that major technical resistance unbroken.

Presidential elections will follow if the two-day referendum approves a new constitution as expected, and a positive result could lead to a presidential bid by army chief General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi."

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Ukraine: Russian bailout stabilises currency, not streets | beyondbrics | #EuroMaidan

Ukraine: Russian bailout stabilises currency, not streets | beyondbrics:

"A Russian bailout that Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovich brokered last month appears to have propped up Kiev’s fragile currency and central bank reserves that were dwindling last year amid weak demand for Ukraine’s exports and a recession that was triggered, in part, by lack of reforms.

But the bailout has not stabilised the situation on Kiev’s streets.

Anti-government protests that erupted after Yanukovich’s surprise U-turn from EU integration towards Moscow have continued for almost two months now – albeit in numbers smaller than December’s crowds of hundreds of thousands.

It was in December that Ukraine received the first $3bn tranche of a Russian bailout valued at $20bn, including $15bn in bond purchases, loans and a 30 per cent discount on imports of Russian natural gas."

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New official forum on exporting capital and expertise from the UAE as FDI tops $100bn « ArabianMoney

New official forum on exporting capital and expertise from the UAE as FDI tops $100bn « ArabianMoney:

"Foreign direct investments from the UAE now total more than $100 billion, the rather sparse audience of The Highflyers Forum heard this morning, a new annual event drawing together the top UAE-based companies that export their capital and expertise to the rest of the world.

It was a very diverse collection of companies, from airlines to producers of halal foods. But some themes emerged. The main focus seems to be the CIS countries and Eastern Europe and those nations coming up for European Union membership."

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ECONOMICS - Turkish Lira hits another record low on current account gap data

ECONOMICS - Turkish Lira hits another record low on current account gap data:

"The Turkish Lira slumped to a record low against the U.S. dollar after the announcement of current account deficit data that fueled concerns over the country’s financing vulnerabilities.

After starting off the day at around the 2.18 level, the Turkish currency jumped to an all-time record of 2.1965 against the dollar.

The slump followed the Central Bank’s announcement that Turkey’s current account deficit had risen to $3.9 billion in November from $2.9 billion the previous month."

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Russia tries to revive interest in struggling stock market |

Russia tries to revive interest in struggling stock market |

"2013 seemed to end on a grim note for Russia’s economy with consumer confidence hitting a new low.

The country’s economy has had a bumpy start to 2014 too. The recent release of high-profile political prisoners does not seem to have rallied investor interest in Russia’s stock market.

Russia recently released former oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky, 30 Greenpeace members locked up over charges of piracy replaced by accusations of hooliganism as well as two members of the Pussy Riot rock band who were also jailed for hooliganism.

The day after the release of Khodorkovsky, Russia’s Micex stock index climbed just 0.3 percentage points, however. When President Vladimir Putin first declared that Khodorkovsky was being pardoned, stocks rose only 1%.

Such a poor reaction is perhaps testament to the fact that investors still have massive concerns about Russia’s human rights record and the vulnerability of business people to the government and law if they fall out of favour.

Investors remain suspicious"

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Competition drives US auto industry

Egypt facing economic, investor crisis - Al-Monitor: the Pulse of the Middle East

Egypt facing economic, investor crisis - Al-Monitor: the Pulse of the Middle East:

"A recent report said Egyptian banks offered 40 billion Egyptian pounds [$5.7 billion] in loans during fiscal year 2012–2013. The report confirmed that banks, in their funding, focused on projects linked to oil and the energy sector. Data showed a credit decline in the tourism sector, continuing the decline in the tourism industry's performance after the Jan. 25, 2011, revolution. Many businesses have become unable to produce the cash flow necessary to meet debt service obligations. At present, any visitor to Egypt would notice the economic recession from which businesses in various sectors are suffering."

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Saudi Gazette - Saudi businessmen seek to amend Egypt investment law

Saudi Gazette - Saudi businessmen seek to amend Egypt investment law:

"Saudi members in the Egyptian-Saudi Council proposed a bill to amend the Egyptian Law 8/1997 concerning investment guarantees and incentives. Furthermore, the bill amends the Egypt-Saudi Arabia Trade Agreement and enables the council to use international arbitration in its negotiations.

Egyptian-Saudi Council Chairman Abdallah bin Mahfouz revealed that the Saudi side proposed the amendments to the interim President Adly Mansour at the GCC Economic Forum held in Egypt.

Bin Mahfouz gave Al-Hayah newspaper an overview of the intended changes: “The proposed bill includes five guarantees. First, criminal cases against the investor’s licensed activities in Egypt are not started unless requested by the Minister of Investment. Second, the Egyptian government has to confirm all the rights and advantages stipulated in previous laws, untouched by new decrees.”"

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Saudi Gazette - NCB net income surges 21.7% in 2013

Saudi Gazette - NCB net income surges 21.7% in 2013:

"National Commercial Bank (NCB) recorded SR7.85 billion net income in 2013, compared to SR6.45 billion in the previous year, an increase of SR1.399 million, with a growth rate of 21.7 percent, NCB Chairman Mansour Al-Maiman said Monday.

Al-Maiman said the bank has boosted its leading position as a premier financial institution through a number of critical internal changes, which had very positive impacts on NCB financial results. NCB looks at 2013 as the year of market growth, expansion in local and international outreach, upgrade of technical infrastructure, and training and development of its human capital. In this regard, certain procedures were taken to enhance NCB work environment, improve staff capabilities and attract the best talents.

In 2013, NCB launched many initiatives reformulating its strategy to meet its shareholders, customers and employees’ aspirations and cope up with the ongoing requirements of our national economy. In addition, NCB completed its major reforming amendments on both organizational and operational levels, which were well reflected on the bank’s performance and growth of its net income."

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UAE unfazed by shale revolution | The National

UAE unfazed by shale revolution | The National:

"The UAE has a clear message for those who believe the shale revolution in North America will challenge Opec’s status as supplier of 40 per cent of the world’s oil.

“This is a great thing for all human beings and all industries and our business,” Ali Al Yabhouni, the UAE’s Opec governor, said yesterday.

“I don’t understand why some people look at this as a threat at Opec producers.”"

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Turnaround in fortunes for UAE’s Shuaa Capital | The National

Turnaround in fortunes for UAE’s Shuaa Capital | The National:

"Shuaa Capital, the UAE’s oldest investment bank, has turned in a full-year profit for the first time since 2008, as cost-cutting and strategy changes take effect against the background of a more benign economic climate in the Emirates.

Shuaa made a net profit attributable to shareholders of Dh2.8 million in 2013, compared with a loss of Dh59m in 2012. Revenues for the year surged 44 per cent to Dh198m. All revenue-generating business divisions were profitable in the year, and contributed to what the company called “this strong performance”.

Posting the small but significant profit for 2013 gave a further boost to the shares, which have risen 80 per cent in value over the past year as Dubai has consolidated its economic recovery. They closed at Dh1.05 on the Dubai Financial Market, up 4 per cent on the day, on healthy volume of 13.9 million shares traded."

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Turkey says Kurdish oil will flow, but vows to abide by Iraqi constitution | The National

Turkey says Kurdish oil will flow, but vows to abide by Iraqi constitution | The National:

"Turkey has repeated its pledge to honour the Iraqi constitution while proclaiming that “oil will flow” from the Kurdish region regardless.

Turkey is in a delicate position as it facilitates discussions between the Kurdish region and the Iraqi federal government over a new pipeline to connect Kurdish oil to global markets through a Turkish port. The pipeline became operational this month in spite of Baghdad’s opposition to independent exports of Kurdish oil, which it says is produced under contracts that violate the Iraqi constitution."

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Drydocks World bullish on Iran |

Drydocks World bullish on Iran |

"There is ample opportunity for Drydocks World to extend its operations in Iran but only once a political solution has been found, chairman of the Dubai government-owned company said on Monday.
Ongoing negotiations between Iran and the P5+1 are reportedly inching closer to a deal that will potentially open the country to outside investment.
Khamis Juma Bu Amim said he expected Iran to be Drydocks World’s first choice once sanctions are lifted. Iran has vast energy reserves, a sector Drydocks World said it is focusing on.
However, the Dubai-based company has fallen out with the Turkish market."

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High Heels to Diapers Rule in Russia IPO Market Surge - Bloomberg

High Heels to Diapers Rule in Russia IPO Market Surge - Bloomberg:

"Less than one month into 2014, Russian companies are already lined up to almost match the $10.6 billion of share sales that took place last year as retailers seek cash for expansion.

Companies from Detsky Mir, the nation’s largest retailer of children’s goods, to hypermarket chain Lenta Ltd. and shoe retailer Obuv Rossii are planning initial public offerings. OAO Gazprombank, which estimates there are $9.3 billion to $12.5 billion worth of deals pending, says the consumer, banking and technology industries will lead the surge in sales. Russian retail sales rose at a faster pace than economists predicted in November as unemployment fell and wages grew.

“Russia is still seen as a very attractive consumer market, the average income has increased so much,” Erik Depoy, an equity strategist at Gazprombank, said in a Jan. 9 telephone interview from Moscow. “A lot of that will reflow back into the economy. If we assume that liquidity conditions globally will remain plentiful, the primary market will have a decent year.”"

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Emerging Stocks Rise as Norilsk Jumps After Indonesia Ban - Bloomberg

Emerging Stocks Rise as Norilsk Jumps After Indonesia Ban - Bloomberg:

"Emerging-market stocks advanced the most in a month as commodity producers jumped after Indonesia’s ban on mineral ore exports fueled speculation nickel supplies will decline. The Jakarta Composite Index led world gains.

The MSCI Emerging Markets Index added 0.8 percent to 977.42, gaining for a second day. OAO GMK Norilsk Nickel, the world’s largest producer of the metal, rallied the most in 13 months in Moscow, Nickel Asia Corp. (NIKL), which accounts for about a third of Philippine output, climbed. Indonesia’s benchmark stock index increased 3.2 percent for the biggest advance among 94 global indexes, while the rupiah rose the most in six weeks.

Commodity shares joined a rally in nickel after a ban on mineral-ore exports took effect in Indonesia, the biggest producer of the metal from mines. The ban is part of a wider policy to boost state revenue by turning Indonesia from an exporter of raw commodities into a manufacturer of higher-value products. Emerging-market stocks also gained as worse-than-estimated U.S. jobs data last week eased concern that the Federal Reserve will accelerate the pace of stimulus cuts."

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