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Monday, 26 January 2015

Traders Delaying Russian Gas Imports Tap Declining EU Stores - Bloomberg

Traders Delaying Russian Gas Imports Tap Declining EU Stores - Bloomberg:



"Europe is accelerating withdrawals from natural gas inventories as traders delay imports of Russian fuel poised to fall with oil.



The amount of gas taken from storage sites in the 28-nation European Union rose 44 percent from a year earlier since the heating season started Oct. 1, Gas Infrastructure Europe data showed. Russian flows to most of Europe and Turkey slid 29 percent last month from a year earlier after falling by a quarter in November, according to OAO Gazprom in Moscow.



Russian gas supplies, usually tied to oil prices with a six- to nine-month lag, will be cheaper in the summer as crude’s 58 percent decline since June filters into long-term contracts. The collapse in oil is a “huge incentive” for traders to buy as little Russian gas as possible now in favor of future deliveries, Citigroup Inc. said in a Jan. 20 report."



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Russia Credit Rating Cut to Junk by S&P First Time in Decade - Bloomberg

Russia Credit Rating Cut to Junk by S&P First Time in Decade - Bloomberg:



"Russia’s foreign-currency credit rating was cut to junk by Standard & Poor’s, putting it below investment grade for the first time in a decade.



S&P, which last downgraded Russia in April, cut the sovereign one step to BB+, according to a statement released on Monday. The grade, which is on par with Bulgaria and Indonesia, has a negative outlook. Russia’s local currency ratings were reduced to BBB-, the lowest investment grade.



The world’s biggest energy exporter is on the brink of a recession after oil prices fell to the lowest since 2009 and the U.S. and its allies imposed sanctions over President Vladimir Putin’s actions in Ukraine. The penalties have locked Russian corporate borrowers out of international debt markets and curbed investor appetite for the ruble, stocks and bonds."



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Saudi CMA Says Stock Market Will Open to Foreigners as Planned - Bloomberg

Saudi CMA Says Stock Market Will Open to Foreigners as Planned - Bloomberg:



"Saudi Arabia said it’s on track to open the Arab world’s biggest stock market to foreigners in the first half of the year, confirming no change of policy since a new monarch ascended to the throne following King Abdullah’s death.



The Capital Markets Authority has issued draft laws and is assessing investor feedback before it approves the regulations and sets an official date for the lessening of restrictions on the $484 trillion exchange, governor Mohammed Al-Sheikh said at a conference in Riyadh today. King Salman pledged on Friday to maintain the oil-rich nation’s current policies and asserted all ministers will stay in their posts.



Abdullah, who on Jan. 23 passed away aged about 90, helped drive a 27 percent stock rally in the past four years with a $130 billion spending plan. The market regulator’s comments today underscore the kingdom’s commitment to its economic plans as it seeks to boost non-oil industries amid plunging crude prices. The Tadawul All Share Index rose 0.7 percent in its first day of trading following the late king’s death, the largest increase among Persian Gulf stock markets."



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MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi Arabia rises after smooth royal succession | Reuters

MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi Arabia rises after smooth royal succession | Reuters:



"Saudi Arabia's stock market rose on Monday as it traded for the first time since King Salman succeeded his brother Abdullah, who died on Friday. Other bourses in the region were neutral or negative.



After swiftly assuming power, King Salman pledged continuity in energy and foreign policies and appointed younger men as his heirs, appearing to settle the succession issue for years to come.



Investors reacted positively to the smooth succession and the kingdom's main index added 0.7 percent as most stocks closed higher."



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Mobily Value Tumbles $1.83 Billion as Investors Seek Clarity - Bloomberg

Mobily Value Tumbles $1.83 Billion as Investors Seek Clarity - Bloomberg:



"Etihad Etisalat Co. (EEC) shares plunged for a second day after the Saudi phone operator posted its first loss since 2005, erasing $1.83 billion of its market value. 




The shares of the company known as Mobily declined by the daily limit for a second day, slumping 9.8 percent to 38.50 riyals at the close. The market value has slid to 29.7 billion riyals ($7.9 billion) from 36.5 billion riyals on Jan. 21, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The shares have dropped 57 percent in the past 12 months, compared with a 2.9 percent retreat for the country’s benchmark stock index.



Mobily, which suspended Chief Executive Officer Khalid Omar Al Kaf after accounting errors in November, reported a 2.28 billion-riyal loss for in the fourth quarter after a profit a year earlier. The company cited a drop in non-recurring revenue and an increase in operating expenses as reasons for loss."



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Iran Stock ETF Aims to Lure Foreigners Amid Nuclear Talks - Bloomberg

Iran Stock ETF Aims to Lure Foreigners Amid Nuclear Talks - Bloomberg:



"Iran will get its first index exchange-traded fund tomorrow with the instrument’s creator betting on growing foreign demand for the nation’s stocks as it nears a deal to end sanctions over its nuclear program.



Turquoise Partners Group secured regulatory approvals for the Turquoise TSE 30 Iran Index ETF, which will mirror the TSE 30 Index of the biggest stocks by market value on the Iranian bourse, the company said yesterday by e-mail. Fundraising will start on Jan. 27 and the ETF will be listed on Iran’s main equities market, according to the e-mail.



While foreigners can invest in Iranian stocks, international sanctions hinder the process of transferring money and deter institutional funds, according to Charles Robertson, the London-based chief economist at Renaissance Capital Ltd. Iran reached an interim deal in late 2013 with global powers, yet in November negotiations were extended to July after both sides failed to come to a comprehensive agreement."



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Abu Dhabi bourse CEO says most London-listed local firms agree dual-listing | Reuters

Abu Dhabi bourse CEO says most London-listed local firms agree dual-listing | Reuters:



"The chief executive of the Abu Dhabi Securities Exchange said on Monday that most local companies which have floated on the London Stock Exchange in recent years have agreed to dual-list in the emirate.



Rashed al-Baloushi made the comments when speaking to reporters on the sidelines of a regulatory conference. He didn't elaborate on how many companies had agreed to dual list.



Three Abu Dhabi firms have listed in London since 2013: Al Noor Hospitals, Gulf Marine Services and NMC Health. "



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The economic outlook from Davos - YouTube

The economic outlook from Davos - YouTube: ""



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What now for the House of Saud? - YouTube

What now for the House of Saud? - YouTube: ""



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Moderate oil prices hold the key to Saudi Arabia’s future prosperity | The National

Moderate oil prices hold the key to Saudi Arabia’s future prosperity | The National:



"The tenure of King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia comprised an oil boom bracketed by slumps.



King Abdullah, whose death was announced on Friday morning, took effective power in 1995, when King Fahd was incapacitated by a stroke, although his official rule did not start until 2005. Oil prices had already been low for a decade, as Saudi Arabia had tired of defending unsustainable price levels single-handedly and decided to protect its market share.



In 1998, in the face of the Asian economic crisis, the price slumped further, briefly touching US$10 per barrel. Government debt reached $130 billion in 1999, or 120 per cent of the country’s GDP."



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Dubai Islamic Bank confident on loans portfolio thanks to record profit | The National

Dubai Islamic Bank confident on loans portfolio thanks to record profit | The National:



"Dubai Islamic Bank expects its loans portfolio to grow at above average levels in 2015 after its profit rose to a record last year as financing rates fell and deposits boomed.



The lender’s ambitious target of 15 to 20 per cent growth in loans this year, more than double the average nationwide figure in recent years, comes even as economists lower 2015 forecasts for UAE economic growth amid the steepest plunge in oil prices in six years.



“Economists looked at 2014 to be a very challenging year for the right reasons and if you look the other players in the industry have hardly grown above a single digit but we’ve grown high double digits,” Adnan Chilwan, the bank’s chief executive, said at a media conference at the bank’s headquarters in Dubai yesterday."



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GCC should continue to diversify from hydrocarbons-Lord Mayor of City of London | GulfNews.com

GCC should continue to diversify from hydrocarbons-Lord Mayor of City of London | GulfNews.com:



"GCC economies should continue diversifying from hydrocarbons in the backdrop of volatile crude oil prices, and the City of London can offer all sort of instruments to finance infrastructure projects in case of any short fall, Alderman Alan Yarrow, the Lord Mayor of City of London, told Gulf News on Sunday.



Crude oil prices have fallen almost 50 per cent from its of high of more than $100 per barrel last year, prompting many countries like Saudi Arabia and Oman to budget a deficit for 2015.



“I plan to discuss oil price, budgets (during my visit). We can’t have something come down from $105 to $48 without having implications on budgets. A short term fall in price in itself is not a problem. It is how long it would stay there,” Yarrow told Gulf News."



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Ruble Sinks Most in 2 Weeks as Stocks Slide on Ukraine Fighting - Bloomberg

Ruble Sinks Most in 2 Weeks as Stocks Slide on Ukraine Fighting - Bloomberg:



"The ruble tumbled the most in two weeks and stocks slid for the first time in four days on concern escalating bloodshed in Ukraine will lead to tougher sanctions against Russia.



The ruble headed for its weakest close in more than a month, sliding 2.3 percent to 65.7265 by 11:28 a.m. in Moscow as oil dropped and fighting spread along a front line in eastern Ukraine between pro-Russian rebels and government troops. Bonds retreated, snapping three days of gains.



Slumping oil prices and penalties over Russia’s role in the Ukraine conflict, where the death toll has climbed to more than 5,000, have pummeled the ruble and left the economy of the world’s biggest energy exporter teetering on the brink of a recession. The U.S. will “ratchet up pressure” on Russia after a rocket attack on the port city of Mariupol on Saturday, U.S. President Barack Obama said at a news conference in New Delhi on Jan 25."



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Oil Slides to Near 6-Year Low; Saudi Arabia Holds Firm Despite Supply Glut - Bloomberg

Oil Slides to Near 6-Year Low; Saudi Arabia Holds Firm Despite Supply Glut - Bloomberg:



"Oil fell to the lowest level in almost six years as signs that Saudi Arabia’s new king will maintain its production policy and rising U.S. crude stockpiles bolstered speculation that a global glut will persist.



Futures dropped as much as 2.7 percent in New York, extending a 6.4 percent slide last week. King Salman Bin Abdulaziz, who took over after the death of King Abdullah on Jan. 23, pledged to maintain the policies of his predecessor in a speech on Saudi national television. U.S. inventories climbed to 383.5 million barrels last month, the highest level for December since 1930, the American Petroleum Institute reported.



Oil slumped almost 50 percent last year as the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries resisted calls to cut output even as the U.S. pumped at the fastest pace in more than three decades. Saudi Arabia, the world’s biggest exporter, has chosen not to reduce supply and count instead on lower prices to stimulate demand, according to Mohammad Al Sabban, an adviser to the kingdom’s petroleum minister from 1988 to 2013."



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U.A.E. Plans to Keep Investing in Energy Amid Volatile Oil Price - Bloomberg

U.A.E. Plans to Keep Investing in Energy Amid Volatile Oil Price - Bloomberg:



"The United Arab Emirates will continue building and upgrading its oil facilities to maintain its role as a major producer amid the decline and volatility in prices, Energy Minister Suhail Al Mazrouei said.



“Many are saying because of what’s happening around us in terms of the commodity prices, companies should rethink what they invest in their infrastructure. I disagree with that,” Al Mazrouei said today in a speech at a conference in Abu Dhabi, the U.A.E.’s capital and largest emirate. “I think the investment in the infrastructure and the upgrade of infrastructure has to continue.”


The U.A.E. pumped 2.7 million barrels a day of oil in December, making it the fifth-biggest supplier in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The Persian Gulf nation can produce 3 million barrels a day, the data show, and it plans to boost capacity to 3.5 million barrels a day in 2017. Brent crude has dropped 55 percent in the last 12 months and was trading at $48.13 a barrel at 7:25 a.m. in London."



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For Saudis, Falling Demand for Oil Is the Biggest Concern - Bloomberg

For Saudis, Falling Demand for Oil Is the Biggest Concern - Bloomberg:



"As the world’s oil producers wring their hands over a global glut that’s pushing down prices, evidence is mounting that Saudi Arabia is more concerned about shrinking demand.



The world’s largest exporter has chosen not to cut production, counting instead on lower prices to stimulate consumption, said Mohammad Al Sabban, an adviser to Saudi Arabia’s petroleum minister from 1988 to 2013. The Saudis are keeping an eye on investments in fuel efficiency and renewable energy, according to Francisco Blanch, Bank of America Corp.’s head of global commodity research. 




“Nobody should imagine the world will continue to demand oil as long as you have it in your fields,” Al Sabban said in an interview. “We need to prepare ourselves for that stage.”"



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