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Friday, 23 June 2017

Barclays reels from its costly Qatar cash call

Barclays reels from its costly Qatar cash call:

"John Varley was in his office on the 31st floor of Barclays’ headquarters in London’s Canary Wharf when he called a team of his executives heading for Qatar on the bank’s private jet with some alarming news. The Barclays chief executive had just been told by the UK financial regulator what capital ratio the bank needed to reach in the next few months to escape a government bailout: 8 per cent. The team quickly worked out how much cash it needed to raise to reach that target. The answer was £13bn. It was the second weekend of October 2008, only four weeks after Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy in the US, shaking the global financial system. The Barclays team was headed to Qatar on a mission to persuade the gas-rich state for the second time that year to invest billions of pounds to rescue the bank."



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Hedge funds turn from Opec friend to adversary in oil market

Hedge funds turn from Opec friend to adversary in oil market:

"Opec set out to woo some of the biggest oil hedge funds in the industry at the turn of the year, holding private meetings where it laid out plans to cut crude supplies in an attempt to get prices back towards $60 a barrel. It was a dramatic change of tack from an oil cartel that had for years slammed funds as “speculators”, which it accused of turning the world’s most important commodity into a casino. But it was also a recognition that trades placed in Mayfair or Connecticut sometimes wield almost as much influence as the number of supertankers ploughing the sea lanes. Six months on the relationship lies in tatters, with traders rapidly losing faith in Opec’s efforts to end a three-year old oil glut. Brent crude, rather than rallying, has had its worst first half to a year in two decades, dropping by a fifth since January to $45 a barrel."



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Arab states issue Qatar demands | World

Turkish exports to Qatar triple during Gulf crisis: trade minister | Reuters

Turkish exports to Qatar triple during Gulf crisis: trade minister | Reuters:

"Turkish exports to Qatar have tripled from their normal levels to $32.5 million since four Arab countries began boycotting the Gulf state on June 5, Turkey's Customs and Trade Minister Bulent Tufenkci said late on Thursday. Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Egypt and Bahrain accuse Qatar of funding terrorism, fomenting regional instability and cosying up to revolutionary theocracy Iran. Qatar has denied the accusations. They have sent Doha a list of 13 demands including closing Al Jazeera television, reducing ties to their regional adversary Iran and closing a Turkish military base in Qatar, an official of one of the four countries told Reuters."



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Oil stuck in a rut | Markets

Pressure on Qatari currency rises after Saudi-led demands

Pressure on Qatari currency rises after Saudi-led demands:

"Pressure on Qatar’s currency peg heightened on Friday after the Arab states leading a blockade against the kingdom outlined a list of demands that observers said are unlikely to be met, raising the prospect of an extended diplomatic deadlock. The Qatar Central Bank attempts to keep the riyal fixed in an extremely narrow range around 3.64 per dollar, but at publication time the currency was trading at 3.7450 per dollar, having weakened as far as 3.7623 earlier in the morning, according to Bloomberg data. That is its weakest level on record according to Bloomberg data going back to 1988. The central bank has massive foreign exchange reserves and has stated its commitment to supporting the currency in the long term, even if the low liquidity in spot markets means some institutions are trading the riyal outside its normal range."



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