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Sunday, 8 November 2015

GCC states buying more from UK defence firms | GulfNews.com

GCC states buying more from UK defence firms | GulfNews.com:

"Arab Gulf states bought an increasing amount of military weapons from British defence companies this year after entering the Yemen conflict, UK Minister Phillipe Dunne told reporters in Dubai on Sunday.

Dunne, the UK’s Minister of State for Defence Procurement, said at the Dubai Airshow that increasing security pressures in the region were pushing Gulf countries to buy despite low oil prices.

“We are not noticing a significant reduction [in purchases], in fact far from it. We’re seeing more interest in defence capability enhancement by countries in [the] region,” he said."



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UAE’s Islamic banks buck regional trend in third quarter | GulfNews.com

UAE’s Islamic banks buck regional trend in third quarter | GulfNews.com:

"Islamic banks across the GCC have been facing a gradual weakening in their operating outlook for 2015-2016 alongside their conventional counterparts, largely due to declining oil prices and their impact on the over all macroeconomic environment.

Despite such a challenging economic environment, leading UAE-based Islamic banks proved their resilience by reporting a strong set of results for the first three quarters of the year.

Overall the UAE’s Islamic banks have been ahead of their regional and conventional counterparts in terms of assets, profit growth and continued improvement in asset quality."



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MIDEAST STOCKS-Markets sunk by U.S. rate hike threat | Reuters

MIDEAST STOCKS-Markets sunk by U.S. rate hike threat | Reuters:

"The threat of a U.S. interest rate
hike in December dragged down major Middle East stock markets on
Sunday, illustrating how fragile investor sentiment in the
region has become in the face of low oil prices. 

Short-term U.S. bond yields rose to their highest in five
years on Friday after very strong U.S. jobs data for October
boosted the likelihood that the Fed will raise rates before
year's end.

Money market rates have already been rising in the Gulf as
liquidity shrinks because of lower oil revenues. Higher U.S.
rates could intensify the simultaneous fiscal and monetary
squeeze in the region."



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Payroll Friday | Authers' Note - YouTube

Payroll Friday | Authers' Note - YouTube: ""



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Golden age of gas can make a return | The National

Golden age of gas can make a return | The National:

"“Natural gas is poised to enter a golden age,” said the International Energy Agency (IEA) in 2012. In 2014, it said the golden age would spread to China. But so far the gas industry is facing instead an age of lead. Prices are low, demand is short and investors in both production and gas power face heavy losses.

As the IEA said, gas meets the three “A”s – abundant, affordable and acceptable. New gas is being found and developed everywhere from North American shale fields, to giant liquefied natural gas (LNG) projects in Australia, to huge finds off the coasts of East Africa and Egypt. Gas prices have slumped – Asian LNG import prices, which averaged above $16 per million British thermal units last year, have fallen even more sharply than oil, to around $7.45, with Goldman Sachs seeing them at $4.75 by 2019. And gas is cleaner than oil and coal, while gas-fired power plants are simple and quick to build.

In North America, the golden age has been reality for several years. Booming shale production and low prices have boosted US consumption by 17 per cent since 2009, driving out coal. The US petrochemical industry has revived, and the country should start its first LNG exports in January."



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Mena firms facing increased compliance scrutiny | GulfNews.com

Mena firms facing increased compliance scrutiny | GulfNews.com:

"Businesses based in the Middle East and North Africa (Mena) region are expected to face a significant rise in compliance risk scrutiny from global financial institutions and regulators, regional business leaders and compliance specialists have said.

According to professionals attending an EY Mena Sanctions and Financial Crime Symposium last week, nearly seven out of ten (68 per cent) of regional business leaders and senior compliance specialists said they expect to spend significantly more on sanctions and financial crime compliance over the next 12 to 18 months.

The findings come as financial crime challenges and risks become more significant across the Middle East and North Africa (Mena) region, with about 74 per cent predicting that the regional businesses are set for a significant increase in compliance risk scrutiny from global banks and regulators."



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Saudi banks face further deterioration in operating conditions | GulfNews.com

Saudi banks face further deterioration in operating conditions | GulfNews.com:

"The world’s leading credit rating agencies and banking sector analysts expect a further deterioration in the operating conditions of Saudi banks, leading to lower profits, a squeeze on funding and weakening asset quality across the sector.

According to Moody’s, the planned moderation in public spending in Saudi Arabia will be credit negative for banks as it will slow credit growth, tighten funding and weaken asset quality.

However, the robust liquidity and profitability of Saudi lenders and their capital buffers will enable them to moderate these pressures, the rating agency said."



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MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi tests technical support, Egypt slides on rate outlook | Reuters

MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi tests technical support, Egypt slides on rate outlook | Reuters:

"Saudi Arabia's stock market retested technical support and Egypt's market also dropped early on Sunday as the prospect of a U.S. interest rate hike loomed.

The Saudi stock index dropped 1.1 percent to 6,883 points in the opening minutes, falling below its August low of 6,921 points. The index initially tested and held that support last week.

Oil prices fell as much as 2 percent on Friday, with Brent ending below $48 a barrel. That hit petrochemical producers such as Saudi Basic Industries, which sank 1.2 percent."



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Dubai Airshow opens amid drop in new jetliner orders | Reuters

Dubai Airshow opens amid drop in new jetliner orders | Reuters:

"After three years of record jetliner orders, planemakers are bracing for a slowdown in new commitments at the Dubai Airshow which opens on Sunday under the shadow of recently falling oil prices and conflicts in the Middle East.

Barring traditional show surprises, delegates attending the biennial Nov 8-12 event predicted a drop in major commercial order announcements as Gulf airlines take stock after expansion.

The aerospace industry is putting a brave face on the slowdown, saying the tally of more than 400 orders at the 2013 edition was never going to be repeatable. But analysts will be scanning the announcements for any evidence that the dip is more than a return to normality."



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Dubai Stocks Enter Bear Market as Mideast Equities Slump on Oil - Bloomberg Business

Dubai Stocks Enter Bear Market as Mideast Equities Slump on Oil - Bloomberg Business:

"Dubai stocks dropped into a bear market, leading declines across most Middle East equity markets, after Friday’s U.S. labor report increased expectations that the Federal Reserve will lift interest rates this year, pushing Brent crude lower.
The DFM General Index slid 3 percent to 3,347.23, the lowest level since December and the biggest drop in more than two months. The gauge has fallen more than 20 percent since a peak in April. Emaar Properties PJSC, the real estate developer with the largest weighting on the measure, led the declines with a 4.7 percent retreat. Saudi Arabia’s Tadawul All Share Index lost 1.4 percent at 1:34 p.m. in Riyadh.
“When you see an aggressive drop in the oil price, it puts people on edge,” said Ahmed Shehada, executive director for advisory and institutions at NBAD Securities LLC, a unit of the U.A.E.’s biggest bank. “In addition, there are the banks’ results. A lot of operating income has dropped and this is having” an effect across the board, he said."



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Kuwait Sees Oil Glut of Up to Five Years on Increasing Supply - Bloomberg Business

Kuwait Sees Oil Glut of Up to Five Years on Increasing Supply - Bloomberg Business:

"Oil markets will continue to be oversupplied for as long as five years as producers in the Middle East ramp up output, according to Mohammed Al-Shatti, Kuwait’s representative to the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries.
Iraq pumped a record 4.4 million barrels a day in June, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Libyan output, which has declined by more than half due to conflict, can return "at any moment," Al-Shatti said in an interview Saturday in Doha. Iran has the capacity to boost exports by 500,000 barrels a day within one week of sanctions being lifted and by 1 million a day within six months, Roknoddin Javadi, managing director of state-run National Iranian Oil Co., said last month.
"Lower prices will continue until the glut in the market ends," Al-Shatti said. "Many countries are expected to increase production. Iranian crude is expected to return and that means an increase in production.""



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