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Wednesday, 2 July 2014

RusAl Freezes Loan Payments | News | The Moscow Times

RusAl Freezes Loan Payments | News | The Moscow Times:



"Struggling aluminum giant RusAl has agreed with its creditors to extend a period of forbearance on debts of more than $5 billion until November, Interfax reported Wednesday, citing a company statement.



The company will freeze repayments on two loans — a $4.75 billion pre-export financing loan and a another $400 million loan.



The previous freeze on loan repayments was to expire on July 7."



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China leads Brics bank HQ race

U.A.E. Markets Regulator Investigating June Stock Volatility - Bloomberg

U.A.E. Markets Regulator Investigating June Stock Volatility - Bloomberg:



"The United Arab Emirates’ market regulator is investigating share price declines in Dubai and Abu Dhabi during June that led the world’s best performing stock index to post its worst month in more than five years.



Dubai’s benchmark share index plunged 22 percent last month, its biggest decline since November 2008, fueled by changes in ownership and management at Arabtec Holding Co. (ARTC), the country’s largest publicly traded construction company. The index rebounded this week, erasing some of the losses, and is up 30 percent so far this year, making it the best performer in dollar terms among more than 90 gauges tracked by Bloomberg globally.



The price declines brought back memories of crashes in 2006 and 2008 and sparked concerns about the quality of corporate governance and regulation in the U.A.E., whose exchanges began trading as emerging markets last month. It also prompted members of the U.A.E.’s Federal National Council, an advisory authority that represents the interests of the Emirati population, to call for more robust legislation."



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Abu Dhabi’s Aabar Says Studying Boosting Arabtec Holding - Bloomberg

Abu Dhabi’s Aabar Says Studying Boosting Arabtec Holding - Bloomberg:



"Abu Dhabi’s state-owned Aabar Investments PJSC is weighing whether to increase its stake in Dubai construction company Arabtec Holding Co. (ARTC) after announcing last month it had cut its holding.



“Arabtec is an important company to Aabar and in the future we will review the stake we own in Arabtec in a positive way for the company,” Khadem Al Qubaisi, chairman of both companies, told reporters in Abu Dhabi today. The investment is a “strategic” one for Aabar, he said.



Arabtec gained almost 15 percent in Dubai trading, the most in more than two years. Aabar last month cut its Arabtec stake to less than 19 percent from almost 22 percent, stoking concern that the builder may be losing the backing of Abu Dhabi’s government. Arabtec Chief Executive Officer Hasan Ismaik quit on June 18 after Dubai’s largest listed builder lost a third of its market value in two weeks, sparking a stock sell-off in the emirate’s benchmark index."



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Dubai Stocks Gain Most in 10 Months on Bets Rout Has Bottomed - Bloomberg

Dubai Stocks Gain Most in 10 Months on Bets Rout Has Bottomed - Bloomberg:



"Dubai shares rose the most in the world amid growing speculation the selloff that wiped off almost a quarter of the benchmark index’s value has run its course.



The DFM General Index advanced a second day, jumping 7.9 percent, the most since Sept. 10, to 4,389.94 at the close in the emirate. It’s the best performer among more than 90 gauges tracked globally by Bloomberg so far today. Arabtec Holding Co., the United Arab Emirates’ biggest listed builder, advanced 15 percent, the most since April 2012. Emaar Properties PJSC (EMAAR) added 5.1 percent.



“The selling has started to look like it is capitulating,” Akber Naqvi, an executive director at Dubai-based Al Masah Capital Ltd., which manages $545 million, said in e-mailed comments. “The market is at attractive levels and needs consolidation and sideways movement to confirm the bottom, but buyers seem to be more assertive at these levels.”"



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Defterios: In Dubai, 'casino-like culture' has set in - CNN.com

Defterios: In Dubai, 'casino-like culture' has set in - CNN.com:



"From a stock market perspective, the month of June was one of the nastiest on record for the Dubai Financial Market.



It lost 22% from beginning to end, putting this small exchange with high volatility into bear market territory.



This is a bad start for its first official month of trading as an emerging market after a reclassification by MSCI."



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Rosneft and Gazprom: two behemoths battle it out – beyondbrics - Blogs - FT.com

Rosneft and Gazprom: two behemoths battle it out – beyondbrics - Blogs - FT.com:



"Rosneft has raised the stakes in its campaign to strip Gazprom of its monopoly over Russian gas exports. In a sharply worded statement on Tuesday, Russia’s state oil company threatened to take Gazprom to court unless it opened up a planned pipeline to China to rival gas producers.



Gazprom has been gearing up to build the Power of Siberia pipeline since signing a $400bn gas export contract with China in May. Linking vast Gazprom controlled gas fields in east Siberia with the Russian Pacific, the 4,000km pipeline will feed gas to domestic consumers and to the Chinese border.



Alexei Miller, Gazprom’s chief executive, said last week that the company would build the $55bn pipeline with its own money and fill it entirely with its own gas production."



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Egypt eyes up to 5.8 pct growth, 10 pct budget gap in 3 years: finance minister | Reuters

Egypt eyes up to 5.8 pct growth, 10 pct budget gap in 3 years: finance minister | Reuters:



"Egypt is targeting economic growth of between 4 and 5.8 percent within the next three years while holding the budget deficit at 10 percent of economic output, Finance Minister Hany Kadry Dimian told Reuters on Wednesday.



"It is expected that growth will rise gradually to between 4-5.8 percent within the next three years," he said in a text message to Reuters.



That would be a marked acceleration from 2.1 percent in the fiscal year ending June 2013 and the rate above 3 percent targeted this fiscal year. New president Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has said growth should reach 7 percent by June 2018."



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EconoMonitor : EconoMonitor » Understanding Turkey: A Maturing Economy, Despite Declining Growth

EconoMonitor : EconoMonitor » Understanding Turkey: A Maturing Economy, Despite Declining Growth:


Key takeaway – Over the next five years, Turkey’s growth is expected to decline from 5.1 (10-year average) to 3.9 percent, still a solid performance when compared to most peers. Inflation and policy rates are expected to remain elevated, at around 6 and 8 percent, respectively. The USDTRY is likely to depreciate, from 2.1 to 2.4. Declining global liquidity, a complex and non-fully-independent monetary policy, low growth in the EU and the middle-income trap are major economic risks.

A. Economics: lower but less-volatile growth, higher inflation and interest rates, depreciating TRY.

During the past 10 years, GDP grew by 5.1 percent on average, driven by consumption and investments. Over the past decade, the key driver of economic performance was ‘household consumption’ – which accounted for about 70 percent of GDP and on average contributed 3.1 percent to growth. ‘Investment’ accounted for 23 percent of GDP and added an additional 1.7 percent. While ‘exports’ accounted for 25 and ‘imports’ for 28 percent of GDP, ‘net exports’ was a drag to growth, contributing -0.2 percent. Similarly, ‘government’ spending accounted for 10 percent of GDP but its contribution was negligible, at 0.5 percent on average (Figure 1).

Figure 1 - Consumption drives growth, followed by investments
Turkey – Contribution to GDP by expenditure (%)
Source: Turkstat, 2014.
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All Aboard the Gulf Stock Market Roller Coaster - Middle East Real Time - WSJ

All Aboard the Gulf Stock Market Roller Coaster - Middle East Real Time - WSJ:



"It’s like being on a roller coaster ride for investors in several equity markets in the Persian Gulf region this year: after a sharp early-year high, stocks finished the first half with an equally steep, and sudden, fall. And investors still strapped on, have started the second half with another exhilarating rise.





Dubai shares rallied nearly 8% on Wednesday –
the market is up 30% ytd. Zawya.com 


Dubai, of course, has provided the most entertainment. Its main stocks index jumped more than 3% on July 1, after tumbling some 22% last month – but the slide started after the market hit a multiyear high heading into an MSCI emerging markets upgrade. Its neighbour Abu Dhabi and Qatar’s markets have charted similar courses over the period, just less thrilling.



The U.A.E. and Qatari markets have, for several reasons – including the MSCI promotion and strengthening economies – attracted the most crowds thus far. But many investors got off, or were forced to, after that sharp fall in June. They won’t be in a hurry to get back on, or may look for an easier ride."



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Dubai in Turmoil Pursues Clearing Legacy of Toxic Debt - Bloomberg

Dubai in Turmoil Pursues Clearing Legacy of Toxic Debt - Bloomberg:



"Dubai is still clearing up the mess from a near default almost five years ago that sent shockwaves through global markets, and the worst stock-market selloff since 2008 is unlikely to derail the process.



Islamic mortgage provider Amlak Finance PJSC (AMLAK) proposed a new restructuring plan to creditors on June 5, its spokesman said in an e-mail yesterday, which could end years of negotiations on about $2.7 billion of debt. Nakheel PJSC, the property developer that helped spark Dubai’s financial crisis in 2009, said last week it will repay $1.5 billion of bank loans early. The plans were outlined during the worst month for the emirate’s stock market in almost six years, when the DFM General Index (DFMGI) tumbled 22 percent.



“While the Dubai equity market has been in decline, most Dubai credit has held up,” Deepti S.M., a Bangalore-based credit analyst specializing in property at SJS Markets Ltd., said by telephone yesterday. “Companies are trying to restructure or refinance while the bond and loan market conditions are good.”"



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Six Groups Bidding To Buy Stake In Kuwait's Americana - Bloomberg » Gulf Business

Six Groups Bidding To Buy Stake In Kuwait's Americana - Bloomberg » Gulf Business:



"Private-equity firms KKR & Co LP and TPG Capital are among the groups looking to buy a majority stake in food retailer Kuwait Food Co SAK, better known as Americana, Bloomberg reported, citing people familiar with the matter.



The report said at least six groups were considering bidding for the stake held by the Kuwait-based billionaire al-Kharafi family.



A deal could value the company at about $5 billion, Bloomberg reported."



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BR Shetty, the astute businessman who turned $8 into $1bn | The National

BR Shetty, the astute businessman who turned $8 into $1bn | The National:



"BR Shetty is self-effacing almost to the point of mischief: “I am really just an ordinary salesman and deliveryman,” he says.



But the shelves of glittering awards in his office, the Order of Abu Dhabi medal pinned to his suit jacket, and the track record suggest otherwise.



This is the man who arrived in the capital with US$8 in his pocket in 1973, and proceeded to build two of the most successful and enduring business in the UAE: the hospitals and pharmacy group NMC Healthcare, and the remittance chain UAE Exchange."



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Comment: Arabtec affair casts UAE bourses in poor light | The National

Comment: Arabtec affair casts UAE bourses in poor light | The National:



"There is now a real anger among investors at the rolling daily crisis called Arabtec. It focuses on the apparent inability of the company or its owners to appreciate the damage that is being done to UAE markets, as well as the seeming powerlessness of the authorities to do anything to stop it.



The fury spreads from UAE retail investors who believed the Arabtec hype, to international investors newly tempted into UAE markets, to some policymakers, exasperated by the daily convulsions in the boardroom and on the trading floor.



It is no exaggeration to say that there is a serious risk the UAE’s financial markets are being brought into disrepute."



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HSBC says Arabtec has to hire 17,500 staff to clear Dh60bn backlog | The National

HSBC says Arabtec has to hire 17,500 staff to clear Dh60bn backlog | The National:



"Arabtec’s ability to meet its ambitious growth strategy could be seriously hampered by a lack of executive and middle-management talent in the wake of the crisis that has swept the contracting company in recent weeks, according to a new research report.



The report – sent by HSBC analysts to clients but as yet unpublished – says that the company needs to hire an additional 17,500 white-collar employees to execute its backlog until 2017, believed to be standing at more than Dh60 billion.



In the light of recent departures from the company after the chief executive Hasan Ismaik’s departure two weeks ago, “we believe it will be extremely difficult to ramp up the company in anticipation of the backlog execution it targets,” said HSBC’s analyst Nicholas Paton."



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Arabtec to hold news conference Wednesday on rumours | GulfNews.com

Arabtec to hold news conference Wednesday on rumours | GulfNews.com:



"Major Dubai construction firm Arabtec will hold a news conference on Wednesday to respond to market rumours about the company, it said in a bourse statement on Tuesday. 
The news conference will be held at the Abu Dhabi offices of International Petroleum Investment Co (Ipic), which indirectly owns a major stake in Arabtec, at 2pm local time (1000 GMT). The brief statement did not elaborate. Shares in Arabtec, one of Dubai’s most heavily traded stocks, have plunged 63 per cent from a record high in May, pushed down by the abrupt resignation of chief executive Hasan Ismaik and uncertainty over its strategy and relationship with its key shareholders. The collapse has dragged down the entire Dubai stock market. Arabtec has issued a string of statements saying it will continue expanding and will protect shareholders’ rights, but it has not so far publicly addressed the strategy and ownership issues. The company’s shares rebounded on Tuesday, ending 10.3 per cent higher on Dubai’s bourse."



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Sharjah Islamic gets A3/Prime — 2 issuer rating from Moody’s | GulfNews.com

Sharjah Islamic gets A3/Prime — 2 issuer rating from Moody’s | GulfNews.com:



"Moody’s Investors Service on Tuesday assigned to Sharjah Islamic Bank (SIB) isser ratings of A3/Prime-2 and a stand-alone bank financial strength rating of D+, which is equivalent to baseline credit assessment (BCA) of baa3.



The rating assignment reflects SIB’s very strong capital buffers, relatively low borrower and sector concentrations and satisfactory profitability and liquidity metrics, according to the rating agency.



“Moody’s assessment of Sharjah Islamic Bank’s franchise takes into account the growing importance of Islamic finance and associated franchise opportunities in the United Arab Emirates [UAE],” said Khalid Ferdous Howladar, Global Head of Islamic Finance at Moody’s Investors Service."



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Ukraine Unrest Halts IPO Plans for Nation’s Biggest Farm Company - Bloomberg

Ukraine Unrest Halts IPO Plans for Nation’s Biggest Farm Company - Bloomberg:



"Political violence in Ukraine forced Oleg Bakhmatyuk to postpone plans for the initial public offering of UkrLandFarming Plc, the country’s biggest agricultural company.



“Not a single investor will invest in Ukraine now,” Bakhmatyuk, the company’s chief executive officer, said by phone from Kiev yesterday. “An IPO entails confidence in the territory; there is no such confidence.”



Bakhmatyuk had planned to sell shares in both Hong Kong and London, he said. There’s a chance an IPO may happen by the end of 2015, potentially in either location, if the situation in Ukraine improves this year, he said. Bakhmatyuk plans to sell between 20 and 25 percent of UkrLandFarming."



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