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Wednesday, 6 May 2015

Never Mind Oil, Iran’s About to Shake the World Pistachio Market - Bloomberg Business

Never Mind Oil, Iran’s About to Shake the World Pistachio Market - Bloomberg Business:



"Iran is ready to return to the global commodities market, flooding it with fresh supplies and risking a slump in prices.



Oil? Possibly, but there’s a second industry that could be even more disrupted by a nuclear pact between Iran and the west: pistachio nuts.



Iran has far more clout in the market for cocktail nibbles than it does in crude trading. While it ranks only as the world’s seventh-largest oil producer, the Middle Eastern country vies with the U.S. to be the biggest pistachio grower."



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Saudi Stock Windfall Seen by Tadawul CEO on Real Estate Tax - Bloomberg Business

Saudi Stock Windfall Seen by Tadawul CEO on Real Estate Tax - Bloomberg Business:



"Saudi Arabia’s stock market may benefit from funds seeking refuge from a land tax as share sales accelerate, the country’s bourse chief said.



The government’s plan to charge fees for undeveloped land may “trigger a flight of capital from real estate into the capital market,” chief executive officer of the Saudi Stock Exchange Tadawul Adel Al-Ghamdi said in an e-mailed response to questions Tuesday. “We witnessed the beginnings of this only last week with $2.2 billion of prime real estate being sold off over two consecutive days.”



One of King Salman’s first policy decisions after taking power in January was to approve a tax on millions of acres of so-called white land: development plots in cities that lie empty for years because the owners have no incentive to build on them, the official Saudi Press Agency reported March 23. About 40 percent of the land in the capital, Riyadh, sits vacant, the Saudi Housing Ministry estimated in 2013."



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MIDEAST STOCKS-Gulf markets rise as oil hits new 2015 high | Reuters

MIDEAST STOCKS-Gulf markets rise as oil hits new 2015 high | Reuters:



"Most Gulf stock markets rose on Wednesday as Brent oil climbed above $69 per barrel for the first time this year, while Egypt's bourse pulled back after a rally. 




Brent jumped more than 2 percent as a month-long rally gained further impetus from a fall in U.S. crude inventories and conflict in Yemen.



The main Saudi stock index edged up 0.3 percent and producers of petrochemicals, which are set to benefit from oil's recovery, were among the main supports. Advanced Petrochemical Co surged 4.7 percent and Yanbu National Petrochemical Co jumped 2.8 percent."



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MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi Arabia slips, Egypt pulls back after rally - Yahoo News

MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi Arabia slips, Egypt pulls back after rally - Yahoo News:



"Saudi Arabia's stock market slipped in early trade on Wednesday despite strong oil prices after Yemen's Houthis attacked a town in the kingdom for the first time, while Egypt's rally slowed.



The main Saudi index inched down 0.1 percent as blue chips Saudi Basic Industries and Saudi Telecom fell 0.9 and 2.8 percent respectively.



Yemen's Houthi fighters fired mortar and rockets at a Saudi Arabian border town on Tuesday for the first time since a Saudi-led coalition began a military campaign against them in late March."



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Kuwait Finance House Said to Weigh Sale of Malaysian Operations - Bloomberg Business

Kuwait Finance House Said to Weigh Sale of Malaysian Operations - Bloomberg Business:



"Kuwait Finance House KSC, the first foreign Islamic bank to operate in Malaysia, is weighing a sale of its operations in the Southeast Asian nation, people familiar with the matter said.



Kuwait Finance House is working with Credit Suisse Group AG to consider strategic alternatives for the Malaysian business, the people said, asking not to be identified as the process is private. The unit has a book value of 1.7 billion ringgit ($478 million), according to its 2014 annual report.



The possible disposal comes after Kuwait Finance House said in March it will focus on expansion in the Middle East and North Africa. Banks in the six-member Gulf Cooperation Council will increase total loans about 10 percent this year as they take advantage of the region’s strong growth prospects, ratings company Standard & Poor’s wrote in an Oct. 13 report."



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From correction to correction - YouTube

From correction to correction - YouTube: ""



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Dubai real estate transactions fall by more than 50% | The National

Dubai real estate transactions fall by more than 50% | The National:



"The total number of property transactions in Dubai halved last month compared with a year earlier as the market slowdown continued.



According to the latest figures from the Dubai Land Department, the total number of transactions in the emirate plunged 51.8 per cent to 7,311 last month compared with April 2014.



The total value of transactions last month was Dh35.3 billion – down 37.1 per cent on the previous year."



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Inheritance registry created for non-Muslim expats | GulfNews.com

Inheritance registry created for non-Muslim expats | GulfNews.com:



"Non-Muslim expatriates who own property in the UAE can breathe a sigh of relief thanks to new rules set in place by the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) that allow the expats’ assets to be willed to people of their own choosing. 




The centre passed a set of new rules which will exempt non-Muslim expatriates who own assets in Dubai from the Sharia stipulations on succession.



With the DIFC Wills and Probate Registry, non-Muslims will have the right to choose how their estates are to be distributed after death."



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Emirates ‘comfortable with $70 a barrel’ | GulfNews.com

Emirates ‘comfortable with $70 a barrel’ | GulfNews.com:



"Keeping in mind the current volatility in oil prices, Emirates Chairman says while the airline has not yet taken a call on whether it would re-start its hedging strategy, oil prices in the region of $70 per barrel and above would be a comfortable area for the airline industry.



Asked if Emirates would reconsider its strategy, having called it off a few years ago, Shaikh Ahmad Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President of Dubai Civil Aviation and Chairman and CEO of Emirates airline and Group, said: “We haven’t decided as yet if we [will] do it or not, and what percentage [of Emirates’ fuel]. Oil prices in the region of $70-$75 [a barrel] will be acceptable to the entire industry, not just Emirates.”



Emirates scrapped its hedging policy a few years ago after having taken a huge hit on its bottom line owing to oil price volatility."



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Should UBS spin off investment bank? - YouTube

Should UBS spin off investment bank? - YouTube: ""



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Dubai Puts Hotel Success to the Test With More, More, More - Bloomberg Business

Dubai Puts Hotel Success to the Test With More, More, More - Bloomberg Business:



"The Burj al Arab. The Jumeirah Beach Hotel. The palm island’s Atlantis. All unmistakably Dubai, the Persian Gulf emirate that turned itself into a luxury tourist destination.



Now Dubai is doubling down by building hotels at the fastest pace of any city, putting pressure on occupancy and rates that are among the highest in the world. The 14,385 rooms under construction will increase supply by about a fifth, according to industry researcher STR Global, and thousands more are planned.



“There is concern around Dubai that we won’t see the same high rates as before,” Philip Wooller, Middle East and Africa director at STR Global, said in an interview. “But there is a bigger picture here and Dubai’s room rates need to soften to keep people coming and to allow the market to evolve.”"



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