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Monday, 8 May 2017

Saudi Arabia's stock market overhaul ahead of Aramco floatation

Saudi Arabia's stock market overhaul ahead of Aramco floatation:

"The flotation of Saudi Aramco, the desert Kingdom's national oil company, promises to be the biggest initial public offering of all time.

And, even if the amount at which the company is valued turns out to be lower than the original sums mooted, it will still be a colossal event for financial markets.

While most attention in the UK has been on the fees bonanza the City can expect and on whether the London Stock Exchange will be one of the exchanges on which Saudi Aramco's shares will be listed, the Saudis themselves are hoping that the flotation will have a huge impact on how their economy is perceived by the rest of the world."



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MIDEAST STOCKS-Dubai's DSI ends higher on CEO remarks, modest rebound across region | Reuters

MIDEAST STOCKS-Dubai's DSI ends higher on CEO remarks, modest rebound across region | Reuters:

"Shares of builder Drake & Scull (DSI) rose in the final hour of trade on Monday as retail investors reacted to some potentially positive news from the company, while the region recovered some of the previous session's losses.

DSI, which fell by a little more than 5 percent earlier in the session, closed 0.8 percent higher after chief executive Wael Allan told Reuters in an interview it expects to hear "very soon" from Saudi Aramco about settling about 1.05 billion riyals, only half the outstanding payments owed to it for its work on Riyadh's King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Centre.

If the matter is not settled, Allan said DSI may consider legal options including arbitration."



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Emirates cuts flights to New York | GulfNews.com

Emirates cuts flights to New York | GulfNews.com:

"Emirates on Monday has announced that it will temporarily cut its daily non-stop service to New York’s JFK down to twice a day. The Dubai-based airline currently operates three flights to JFK. In a statement, Emirates confirmed that the changes will take from June 4 until June 20, and will resume normal operations from July 1."



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Saudi Arabia and Russia Signal Oil-Cuts Extension Into 2018 - Bloomberg

Saudi Arabia and Russia Signal Oil-Cuts Extension Into 2018 - Bloomberg:

"Saudi Arabia and Russia signaled they could extend production cuts into 2018, doubling down on an effort to eliminate a supply surplus just as its impact on prices wanes. In separate statements just hours apart on Monday, the world’s largest crude producers said publicly for the first time they would consider prolonging their output reductions for longer than the six-month extension widely expected to be agreed at the OPEC meeting on May 25. "We are discussing a number of scenarios and believe extension for a longer period will help speed up market rebalancing” Russian Energy Minister Alexander Novak said in a statement. The nation is ready to support extending the oil deal beyond 2017, the Energy Ministry said."



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Fitch: GCC Bank M&A Surge Unlikely, Despite Market Conditions | Reuters

Fitch: GCC Bank M&A Surge Unlikely, Despite Market Conditions | Reuters:

"A surge in mergers and acquisitions among banks in Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries is unlikely due to structural impediments, despite market conditions that appear conducive and numerous rumours about potential deals, Fitch Ratings says. We believe tie-ups will be limited to those that create leading domestic market players or allow shareholders to realise value immediately upon the inception of the merger. Banks across the region are facing pressure on profitability and tighter liquidity, especially in countries where public sector deposits have been withdrawn from banks to shore up government finances weakened by lower oil prices. The UAE (which has about 50 banks), Bahrain and, to some extent, Oman would benefit from consolidation as many banks in these countries lack sufficient scale."



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UPDATE 1-Dubai's Drake & Scull expects to hear soon from Aramco on outstanding claims | Reuters

UPDATE 1-Dubai's Drake & Scull expects to hear soon from Aramco on outstanding claims | Reuters:

"Loss-making Dubai contractor Drake & Scull International said it expects to hear "very soon" from Saudi Aramco about settling nearly half of outstanding payments owed for its work on Riyadh's King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Centre. Drake & Scull (DSI) has five claims outstanding with Aramco totalling 2.3 billion riyals and hopes to soon settle 1.05 billion riyals of them, DSI Group Chief Executive Wael Allan told Reuters. If the matter is not settled, Allan said DSI may consider all legal options including arbitration to recover the remaining amount for its work on the research centre (KAPSARC), which cost $543 million to build and opened in 2016."



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Russia-U.S. Gas Rivalry Set to Dominate as EU Traders Gather - Bloomberg

Russia-U.S. Gas Rivalry Set to Dominate as EU Traders Gather - Bloomberg:

"In a market where delays and outages are never far off, the near-flawless start of U.S. liquefied natural gas plants will have European energy traders and executives abuzz when they meet this week at Flame.

How that extra gas will add to a global glut as Russia, the world’s largest exporter of the fuel, seeks to pump record volumes to the region will likely dominate talks among the 600 or so delegates meeting for Europe’s biggest gas conference in Amsterdam. Supply issues, the outlook for demand and pricing are also on the agenda."



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Hedge Funds Bail Just Before OPEC-Driven Oil Rally Vanishes - Bloomberg

Hedge Funds Bail Just Before OPEC-Driven Oil Rally Vanishes - Bloomberg:

"Hedge funds jumped out of the oil market just in time.

Before West Texas Intermediate crude nosedived on Thursday, wiping out the rally driven by OPEC’s deal, money managers slashed bets on rising prices by 20 percent, according to U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission data. Now they may soon be well poised to start betting on the next rally.

“We are moving toward a positioning where these money managers are no longer over-invested,” Tim Evans, an analyst at Citi Futures Perspective in New York, said by telephone. “This opens up the potential for them to start buying again.”"



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Bahrain Reserves Tumble as BofA Expects Gulf to Demand Action - Bloomberg

Bahrain Reserves Tumble as BofA Expects Gulf to Demand Action - Bloomberg:

"Bahrain’s foreign-currency reserves tumbled 11 percent in February, extending a decline that has fueled speculation that the island kingdom would either tap international bond markets soon or seek financial support from other Gulf Arab monarchies. Net foreign assets dropped to 645.2 million dinars ($1.7 billion), from the 725.9 million dinars in January, according to central bank data released on Sunday. Overall, they’re down 71 percent from a peak of 2.24 billion dinars in November 2014. Bahrain, a close Saudi ally and home to the U.S. Navy Fifth Fleet, has been more vulnerable to slumping oil prices and regional political instability than richer Gulf Cooperation Council states. With authorities expected to maintain the dollar peg, Bahrain “will likely either tap international markets or receive support from other GCC governments,” said Carla Slim, Dubai-based economist at Standard Chartered."



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Etihad appoints interim CEO to replace Hogan

Etihad appoints interim CEO to replace Hogan:

"Etihad Airways has appointed Ray Gammell as interim group chief executive, confirming the departure of James Hogan on 1 July. The airline in a statement said it was in “advanced stages” of recruiting a permanent group chief executive, with an announcement expected in “the next few weeks.” Mr Gammell, the airline’s chief people and performance officer, will take “full management responsibilities from today.” He joined the company in 2009."



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MIDEAST STOCKS-Dubai's Drake & Scull continues heavy losses, region mixed | Reuters

MIDEAST STOCKS-Dubai's Drake & Scull continues heavy losses, region mixed | Reuters:

"Shares of builder Drake & Scull (DSI) continued to sink in early trade on Monday heading for a second day of heavy losses on its revised recapitalisation programme while markets across the region were mixed. Dubai's DSI was down 5 percent to 0.379 dirhams after an hour of trade, heading to a 14 month low. The stock plummeted 9.9 percent on Sunday on news that at a shareholder meeting at the end of last week the company had increased its write off by up to 722 million dirhams, in addition to a previously planned reduction of 992 million dirhams. This would effectively further dilute current shareholdings."



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Saudi Arabia Says Oil Curbs Could Extend Beyond End of 2017 - Bloomberg

Saudi Arabia Says Oil Curbs Could Extend Beyond End of 2017 - Bloomberg:

"Saudi Arabia’s oil minister said he’s confident that an agreement by producers to curb crude output and shrink a market glut will be extended into the second half of the year and possibly beyond.

While U.S. shale output growth and the shutdown of refineries for maintenance have slowed the impact of cuts by OPEC and its partners, producers are determined to reach their goal of reducing bloated stockpiles, Khalid Al-Falih said at the Asia Oil and Gas Conference in Kuala Lumpur on Monday. He said he’s confident the global oil market will soon rebalance and return to a “healthy state.”"



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Politics chill Iran’s attempts to attract foreign capital

Politics chill Iran’s attempts to attract foreign capital:

"When Iran last year cemented a landmark nuclear agreement with six world powers to remove many of the sanctions against it, Hassan Rouhani, the country’s reformist president, said it would aim to attract at least $30bn a year of foreign investment.

“From today, merchants and entrepreneurs in our country can benefit from normal ways of banking transactions to start their exports,” he said.

“From today, our banks are reconnected to the world’s banking system . . . Today is the day of victory.”

"



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