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Wednesday, 29 January 2014

MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi shares rise; most Gulf mkts up on global cues | Reuters

MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi shares rise; most Gulf mkts up on global cues | Reuters:



"* Saudi index climbs 0.6 pct, recovers losses from the week



* Abu Dhabi measure rose to 65 month high



* Dubai slips on profit-taking



By Nadia Saleem and Raya Atallah

DUBAI, Jan 29 (Reuters) -



Saudi Arabia's shares rose on Wednesday, buoyed by a recovery in global markets as investor focus returned to local fundamentals, while most other regional markets also gained.



Asian and European shares rebound and Turkey's lira saw its biggest jump in five years on Wednesday after the central bank stunned investors with a huge rate hike designed to staunch and reverse a major flight from risk."



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Qatar Pivots to Energy Investment Abroad as Home Projects Shrink - Bloomberg

Qatar Pivots to Energy Investment Abroad as Home Projects Shrink - Bloomberg:



"Qatar is buying oil and gas fields from Brazil to the Congo as the biggest liquefied natural-gas producer sees fewer energy developments at home.



Qatar Petroleum International Ltd.’s $1 billion purchase of 23 percent of the Parque das Conchas oilfield off Brazil from Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSA) is the latest of three foreign deals in the past year. It completed the acquisition of 15 percent of Total E&P’s Congo unit in December, injecting $1.6 billion.



QPI also teamed up with Centrica Plc (CNA) in April to buy gas fields in Canada from Suncor Energy Inc. for $981 million.



Qatar, which became the richest country per capita from gas sales, doesn’t plan to boost exports amid a moratorium on more development of its North Field, the largest gas reservoir in the world. Slowing domestic energy investment comes as the country needs to fund $200 billion in infrastructure before hosting soccer’s 2022 World Cup amid weaker economic growth."



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Abu Dhabi's Waha Capital Seeks $700m Loan » Gulf Business

Abu Dhabi's Waha Capital Seeks $700m Loan » Gulf Business:



"Abu Dhabi’s Waha Capital, the largest shareholder in New York-listed aircraft leasing firm AerCap Holdings, plans to raise a $700 million loan mainly to refinance existing debt, three banking sources aware of the matter said.



Waha, in which Abu Dhabi government investment fund Mubadala owns 16 per cent, has picked HSBC Holdings and First Gulf Bank to help arrange the five-year loan, the sources said, speaking on condition of anonymity as the information is not yet public.



Most of the cash will be used to refinance a $505 million debt facility maturing in June, with the remainder to be used by the company for corporate purposes, two of the sources said.



Waha plans to complete the loan by the end of February, they said."



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Expats Face Challenges Finding Work In United Arab Emirates, Despite Buoyant Economy And Strong Job Growth

Expats Face Challenges Finding Work In United Arab Emirates, Despite Buoyant Economy And Strong Job Growth:



"However, will the buoyant economy in the UAE attract white-collar professional foreign workers? MRI Worldwide UAE, an affiliate of leading executive search and recruitment organization, MRINetwork, characterizes the job climate in the UAE as “complex” and which poses “challenges” for both expatriates and private companies. One of the many confounding ironies of the labor market in the UAE is that many jobs are restricted to local citizens – but many such positions go unfilled as there are not enough qualified people available from domestic sources, while some firms are limited in hiring by strict quota systems."



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Qatar buys stake in Brazil oil field for $1 billion - Your Middle East

Qatar buys stake in Brazil oil field for $1 billion - Your Middle East:



"Anglo-Dutch energy giant Royal Dutch Shell said on Wednesday that it has sold a large stake in an offshore Brazilian oil field to Qatar for about $1.0 billion.



 Shell said it has agreed to offload a 23-percent interest in the Parque das Conchas (BC-10) project offshore Brazil to new partner Qatar Petroleum International.



 The deal, which will leave Shell with a 50-percent stake, remains subject to regulatory approval in Brazil.



 The London-listed group will continue to operate the oil field, which currently produces 50,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day.



 Shell added that it will retain a "significant" upstream presence in Brazil."



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Dubai Airport Has Heathrow in Its Sights After Eclipsing Paris - Bloomberg

Dubai Airport Has Heathrow in Its Sights After Eclipsing Paris - Bloomberg:



"Dubai International airport attracted more passengers than Paris Charles de Gaulle and Frankfurt last year as Gulf carriers bleed long-haul transfer traffic away from Europe’s leading hubs.



The airport, home base of Emirates, the biggest airline by international traffic, lifted customer numbers to 66.4 million from 57.7 million a year earlier. The 15 percent gain took Dubai past European No. 2 Charles de Gaulle, which attracted 62 million passengers, and the No. 3 Frankfurt, with 58 million.



A similar growth rate at Dubai in 2014 would allow the hub to surpass London Heathrow, which while growing passenger numbers 3.4 percent to 72.3 million last year is already operating close to the limits of its two runways. The Gulf hub is being expanded to serve 90 million travelers annually, even as Dubai builds the new Al Maktoum base designed to handle 150 million people and with a potential capacity for 200 million.

"



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[chart] Turkish lira turnaround | beyondbrics

[chart] Turkish lira turnaround | beyondbrics:



After hitting all-time lows against the dollar, the lira has staged a big comeback. Here’s the essential reading:


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Gulf Navigation sells two tankers for $98 million | The National

Gulf Navigation sells two tankers for $98 million | The National:



"Gulf Navigation has struck an agreement to sell its two oil tankers for $98 million (Dh360m), providing some relief to the beleaguered company.



The Dubai-based shipping company announced today that it had signed a memorandum of understanding with DHT Holdings of Bermuda for the sale of its Gulf Sheba and Gulf Eyadah tankers.



The agreed price comes in higher than the Dh312.4m that Gulf Navigation had estimated that it could recover for the vessels in its third-quarter results published in November.



DHT expects to take delivery of the vessels next month, according to a statement on its website."



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A bribe-free new year awaits China's public servants

Obama pledges to go it alone

Emerging Currencies Rise With Stocks as Turkey’s Lira Rallies - Bloomberg

Emerging Currencies Rise With Stocks as Turkey’s Lira Rallies - Bloomberg:



"Emerging-market currencies rallied with stocks after Turkey’s emergency interest-rate increase triggered the lira’s biggest gain since 2008, spurring optimism that central banks will take steps to stem capital outflows.



The lira surged 4.1 percent versus the dollar, while South Africa’s rand advanced 1.2 percent before an interest-rate decision. South Korea’s won jumped the most in four months after data showed the nation’s annual current-account surplus widened to a record. Indonesian shares surged 1.8 percent after Morgan Stanley upgraded the country’s equities.



The MSCI Emerging Markets Index climbed 1.2 percent to 944.90 at 1:27 p.m. in Singapore, poised for the biggest gain since Nov. 18. Turkey more than doubled interest rates to stem capital outflows in a decision announced at midnight local time. It came after India’s surprise rate increase yesterday as a rout in developing-nation currencies helped fuel a $1.87 trillion selloff in global stocks in the week through Jan. 27. The U.S. Federal Reserve ends a two-day meeting today with economists projecting a further cut to stimulus."



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Qatar, China Top Ranking of Frontier and Emerging Markets - Bloomberg

Qatar, China Top Ranking of Frontier and Emerging Markets - Bloomberg:



"Amer Khan says he could sense a stock market rally in late 2012 just from the street scene in Dubai, the financial capital of the United Arab Emirates. Tourists were once again jostling for a spot from which to watch the dancing fountains that adorn the downtown area. Recurring traffic jams, increasing retail sales and a rise in airport passengers were other signals for Khan, the senior executive officer at Dubai-based Shuaa Asset Management.



“The signs in the economy were visible before the market took off,” says Khan, whose firm had 780 million dirhams ($212 million) under management at the end of September. “We waited for the pop and eventually it happened.”



Dubai’s benchmark stock index, in the doldrums for two years, rose 117 percent in 2013, including reinvested dividends, leading the world, Bloomberg Markets magazine will report in its March issue. That helped Khan’s Arab Gateway Fund, which invests throughout the Middle East and North Africa, return 39 percent."



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