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Monday, 28 August 2017

Flydubai losses widen to Dh142m in first half | GulfNews.com

Flydubai losses widen to Dh142m in first half | GulfNews.com:

"Low-cost carrier Flydubai reported Dh142.5 million in losses for the first half of 2017 on Monday, with the figure widening from the Dh89.9 million in losses reported in the same half of 2016. The airline attributed losses to higher fuel costs and pressure on yields. The losses came despite a 9.9 per cent year-on-year rise in revenues, which reached Dh2.5 billion in the first half as an increase in passenger numbers gave a boost to revenues. Passenger numbers reached 5.4 million, up 10.5 per cent year-on-year."



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Grappling with debt, UAE's JBF RAK in talks to sell Belgian plant: sources

Grappling with debt, UAE's JBF RAK in talks to sell Belgian plant: sources:

"JBF RAK, a United Arab Emirates subsidiary of Indian polyester maker JBF Industries, is in talks to sell its plant in Belgium for up to 250 million euros ($298 million) in an effort to settle part of its debt, sources familiar with the matter said.

The sale is one of a number of moves under discussion between the company and banks as JBF RAK seeks to re-negotiate around 2 billion dirhams ($545 million) in debt and turnaround its fortunes after it fell into financial problems earlier in the summer.

Banks have hired PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) to represent their interests, while JBF RAK has hired AlixPartners, said the sources. The advisers are working together to come up with a strategy for the company’s future including examining the amount of debt it owes, as well as proposals on potential asset sales and a restructuring of management."



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Qatar may cut capital spending because of sanctions - Fitch

Qatar may cut capital spending because of sanctions - Fitch:

"Qatar’s government may reduce its capital spending on economic projects and infrastructure if damage to its economy from sanctions intensifies, Fitch Ratings said on Monday as it cut the country’s credit rating.

Fitch lowered Qatar by one notch to AA-minus with a negative outlook. That brought it into line with the other two major rating agencies, Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s, which assess Qatar at the same level and also have negative outlooks for it.

Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt cut ties with Qatar on June 5, accusing it of backing terrorism, which it denies. They imposed sanctions closing Qatar’s only land border, with Saudi Arabia, and disrupted its maritime shipping routes by ending its use of Dubai as a trans-shipment hub."



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Qatar Cut to AA- by Fitch With No End in Sight to Gulf Dispute - Bloomberg

Qatar Cut to AA- by Fitch With No End in Sight to Gulf Dispute - Bloomberg:

"Qatar’s sovereign rating was cut to AA- by Fitch Ratings, which cited little progress toward ending a Saudi Arabia-led embargo of the emirate.

Fitch lowered the Gulf state’s sovereign long-term debt rating by one notch, putting it on par with Belgium and South Korea. The outlook is negative, the New York-based firm said in a statement Monday.

“International mediation efforts are still ongoing but are not showing significant progress,” Fitch analysts Krisjanis Krustins and Jan Friederich said. “In our view, the negotiating positions of Qatar and the boycotting countries remain far apart.”"



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MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi banks strong before FTSE upgrade decision, Egypt rebounds

MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi banks strong before FTSE upgrade decision, Egypt rebounds:

"Banks helped nudge stock markets in the Gulf higher on Monday with Saudi Arabian lenders, which may benefit from a potential upgrade of the kingdom by index compiler FTSE at the end of next month, outperforming. Egypt firmed on buying by foreign funds.

Late next month FTSE will announce its decision on whether to include Saudi Arabia and Kuwait in its secondary emerging market index. Analysts at Arqaam Capital and EFG Hermes believe the chances are high for a positive decision in both cases.

One of Riyadh’s largest listed lenders, National Commercial Bank, added 1.5 percent and Samba Financial Group rose 0.9 percent."



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Qatari riyal under renewed pressure despite credit rating reprieve

Qatari riyal under renewed pressure despite credit rating reprieve:

"S&P’s decision to remove Qatar from negative credit watch offered little support to the country’s currency on Monday, as the kingdom’s decision to restore diplomatic ties with Iran raised fears that its diplomatic spat with its Gulf neighbours is likely to get worse before it gets better. S&P downgraded Qatar’s sovereign credit rating to AA- in June and warned that it could be downgraded further after a Saudi Arabia-led group of nations accused the government of supporting terrorism and launched an economic embargo. In a scheduled update on Friday, however, S&P kept Qatar’s ratings on hold and removed it from credit watch, saying it expects the government to “continue to actively manage the impact of the boycott while preserving Qatar’s core rating strengths, including strong public finances”."



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Why The Shale Oil “Miracle” Is Becoming A “Debacle”  |  Peak Oil News and Message Boards

Why The Shale Oil “Miracle” Is Becoming A “Debacle”  |  Peak Oil News and Message Boards:

"This is an amazingly important concept. Yet it’s almost universally overlooked. Sometimes it’s hard to appreciate the magical role energy plays in our daily lives because most of what we experience is a derivative of it. The connection is hidden from direct view.  Because of this, most people utterly fail to detect or appreciate the priceless and irreplaceable role of high net-energy fuel sources (such as oil and gas) to our modern lifestyle. With high net-energy, society enjoys increasing complexity and technological advances. It’s what enables us to pursue massive goals like desalinating billions of gallons of seawater, or going to Mars.  But without high net-energy fuel sources, our capabilities quickly regress to those of decades — or even centuries — past."



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Hospitals, airports, schools, football clubs: KSA hangs up the ‘for sale’ signs | Arab News

Hospitals, airports, schools, football clubs: KSA hangs up the ‘for sale’ signs | Arab News:

"The summer months appear to have been anything but restful for policymakers in Saudi Arabia working on the Kingdom’s enormous privatization program, judging by the amount of public information that has been made available on this crucial subject.
Just by way of background: The Vision 2030 strategy, aimed at diversifying the Kingdom’s economy away from oil dependency, foresees big expansion in private-sector activity as a dynamo for further growth.
Apart from the historic initial public offering (IPO) of Saudi Aramco — based on a valuation of $2 trillion, the offering of 5 percent of the shares would be the biggest ever at $100 billion — there is an even bigger schedule of other privatizations, ranging from power stations to football clubs, that has been officially valued at $200 billion."



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U.A.E President Approves 5% Value-Added Tax - Bloomberg

U.A.E President Approves 5% Value-Added Tax - Bloomberg:

"EFG Hermes MENA Equity Strategist Mohamad Al Hajj discusses a 5% value-added tax to begin January 18 in the United Arab Emirates. He speaks on "Bloomberg Markets: Middle East." (Source: Bloomberg)"



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Harvey may succeed where OPEC has struggled by boosting oil prices: Russell

Harvey may succeed where OPEC has struggled by boosting oil prices: Russell:

"Hurricane Harvey may achieve in global crude oil markets in a few days what OPEC and its allies have struggled to achieve in months - a tightening of supplies and a rise in prices. Harvey, which has been downgraded to a tropical storm, hit the coast of Texas on Friday as the most powerful hurricane to hit the U.S. state in more than 50 years, causing widespread damage and flooding. The region where the storm struck is home to some 2.2 million barrels per day (bpd) of refining capacity as well as being a major shipment point for both imports and exports of crude oil and fuel products."



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MIDEAST STOCKS-Banks help lift Saudi as neighbouring markets weaken

MIDEAST STOCKS-Banks help lift Saudi as neighbouring markets weaken:

"Banking shares helped to keep Saudi Arabia’s stock market firm in early trade on Monday while the rest of the region continued to weaken in anaemic trade. The Riyadh index rose 0.1 percent after 25 minutes as the two largest banks gained, with National Commercial Bank adding 0.4 percent and Al Rajhi up 0.6 percent. Dubai’s index, which had been the region’s worst performer on Sunday, lost 0.2 percent on Monday morning as 16 shares dropped, including GFH Financial Group down 1.1 percent."



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