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Saturday, 28 October 2017

Why is it so hard to get a clear picture of Aramco IPO? - The National

Why is it so hard to get a clear picture of Aramco IPO? - The National:

"Almost two years have passed since the Saudi crown prince Muhammad bin Salman intimated that Aramco was considering an initial public offering (IPO). Since then, some more details have crystallised, including that 5 per cent of the company is up for sale, and that the IPO is a firm plan rather than an abstract possibility. Yet the IPO remains mostly mysterious, with most media reports being based on anonymous sources from within the oil behemoth, or unnamed hedge fund managers. Why is it so hard to get transparent analysis? Several factors are at play. First, much of the background information that would usually be available in the build-up to an IPO, such as objective assessments of the company’s assets, are unavailable due to Aramco’s importance to Saudi Arabia’s national security, in an era where the kingdom faces a multitude of geo-political threats. In contrast, when a company such as the cloud storage major Dropbox considers an IPO, there are no national security concerns that retard the flow of relevant information to prospective investors."

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Brent oil above $60 level for first time since 2015

Brent oil above $60 level for first time since 2015:

"Brent crude oil hit $60 a barrel on Friday for the first time in more than two years, in the latest sign the market is tightening after a three-year glut. The international oil benchmark hit a high of $60.53 a barrel in afternoon trading in London, taking gains to more than 35 per cent since it slumped to a low for the year of $45 a barrel in June. Oil has been boosted by strong demand as the world’s economy expands at its fastest in years, helped along by prices that remain almost half the level they were in mid-2014."

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Saudi prince uses ‘Davos in the desert’ to woo world’s top investors

Saudi prince uses ‘Davos in the desert’ to woo world’s top investors:

"Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman beamed as he swept through a 3,000-strong crowd of politicians and the world’s most powerful financiers like a rock star.

At each turn, he was stopped for a handshake, a quiet word or selfies as people clamoured for their moment with the Saudi heir-apparent at a conference this week in Riyadh, dubbed by some as “Davos in the desert”.

The gathering was viewed as Saudi Arabia’s coming-out party, with the charismatic royal seeking to woo bankers and investors with his grandiose vision to overhaul the oil-dependent economy and modernise the conservative kingdom. And the 32-year-old did not hold back when outlining the scale of his ambitions."

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