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Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Labour challenges Downing St on $2bn Saudi Aramco loan guarantee

Labour challenges Downing St on $2bn Saudi Aramco loan guarantee:

"Britain’s opposition party has flagged concerns about plans to provide a $2bn loan guarantee for Saudi Arabia’s state energy giant Saudi Aramco, which has emerged as London is vying to host a stock exchange listing for the world’s largest oil producer. John McDonnell, shadow chancellor, wrote to the government on Tuesday demanding answers on the proposed credit backstop, asking what conversations had taken place between ministers and their Saudi counterparts before the loan guarantee was agreed. In his letter to chancellor Philip Hammond, seen by the Financial Times, the Labour MP asked on what grounds and on what evidence the decision had been made, and whether it was in the interests of the British public."



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Eni signs Oman oil and gas exploration deal, Qatari firm to take stake

Eni signs Oman oil and gas exploration deal, Qatari firm to take stake:

"Italian energy firm Eni signed a deal on Tuesday to explore an area off the southern coast of Oman for oil and gas and inked an agreement for Qatar Petroleum (QP) to take a stake in the block. Under the Exploration and Production Sharing Agreement (EPSA), Eni will be operator of Block 52 with an initial 85 percent stake, with the rest held by a subsidiary of state-owned Oman Oil Company SAOC. But Eni said it had also signed an agreement to cede 30 percent of the block to Qatar Petroleum (QP), a move that will reduce the Italian firm’s stake to 55 percent once completed."



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Update: Dubai's DIFC announces $100mln fintech fund | ZAWYA MENA Edition

Update: Dubai's DIFC announces $100mln fintech fund | ZAWYA MENA Edition:

"Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) on Tuesday announced it is establishing a $100 million fund to invest in early-stage and growth start-ups in the financial technology space. The fund was announced by the governor of the Dubai International Financial Centre, Essa Kazim, during his introductory address at the DIFC's inaugural Global Financial Forum event in Dubai on Tuesday morning. Kazim said the fund would help to establish "start-up and growth-stage fintech firms looking for access to the MEASA (Middle East, Africa and South Asia) markets". "



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Reduce bureaucracy, reform banking: Emir lays out 7-point strategy to fortify Qatar economy - The Peninsula Qatar

Reduce bureaucracy, reform banking: Emir lays out 7-point strategy to fortify Qatar economy - The Peninsula Qatar:

"While addressing the Advisory Council today morning, the Emir H H Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani, laid out the strategy to fortify Qatar’s economy. “Our strategy to fortifying the national economy must be based on the following, he said: First, completion of the necessary legislations and decrees to facilitate investment, reduce bureaucracy, and reform the banking system to be compatible with the major tasks that we face in the new stage of building the economy and the state. Second, completion of food and water security projects over a specified time frame, and development of new industries and services necessary to respond to any contingencies, and implementing constructions and facilities that are essential for oil and gas industry."



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U.S. to Dominate Oil Markets After Biggest Boom in World History - Bloomberg

U.S. to Dominate Oil Markets After Biggest Boom in World History - Bloomberg:

"The U.S. will be a dominant force in global oil and gas markets for many years to come as the shale boom becomes the biggest supply surge in history, the International Energy Agency predicted.

By 2025, the growth in American oil production will equal that achieved by Saudi Arabia at the height of its expansion, and increases in natural gas will surpass those of the former Soviet Union, the agency said in its annual World Energy Outlook. The boom will turn the U.S., still among the biggest oil importers, into a net exporter of fossil fuels."



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Citigroup, UBS Are Among the Banks Most Exposed to Wealthy Saudi - Bloomberg

Citigroup, UBS Are Among the Banks Most Exposed to Wealthy Saudi - Bloomberg:

"Citigroup Inc. and UBS Group AG are among international banks managing the largest share of assets for wealthy Saudis, some of whom are being investigated as part of a government probe into alleged corruption, according to people familiar with the matter.

JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Credit Suisse Group AG also manage billions of dollars for some of the kingdom’s richest individuals, the people said, asking not to be identified because of the sensitivity of the matter. Citigroup’s private bank counts Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, the world’s 58th-richest person, and Khalid al-Tuwaijri, former chief of the Royal Court, as clients, two of the people said. Both are among those who were detained in the probe, the people said.

Saudi Arabia has long been the target of wealth managers such as UBS, Credit Suisse and Deutsche Bank AG, as well as other global banks seeking to advise the country’s ultra-rich. The kingdom was the 16th most populous country for high-net-worth individuals last year with 176,000, according to Capgemini’s 2017 World Wealth Report."



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MIDEAST STOCKS-Gulf mostly little changed, Dubai's GFH continues surge

MIDEAST STOCKS-Gulf mostly little changed, Dubai's GFH continues surge:

"Major Middle East stock markets moved largely sideways on Tuesday with little positive news to spur buying, although GFH Financial continued surging in Dubai after disclosing details of its business strategy. In contrast to recent days, Saudi Arabia’s index spent almost the entire day higher, closing up 0.3 percent - a sign that the impact of the kingdom’s sweeping anti-corruption purge, which has alarmed investors, might be easing. Since the beginning of last week, the market had traded lower for most of the day before rebounding toward the close as state-linked funds bought shares, apparently as part of a deliberate market-support operation designed to prevent panic."



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QFC records jump in new firms after economic blockade: Al-Jaida

QFC records jump in new firms after economic blockade: Al-Jaida:

"The Qatar Financial Centre (QFC) Authority has recorded an increase in the number of new firms after the economic blockade imposed on Qatar in June, a senior QFCA official has said.
This was on top of the 41% year-on-year increase in the new companies that have registered under the Qatar Financial Centre Regulatory Authority during the first six months of 2017, QFCA CEO Yousuf Mohamed al-Jaida told reporters yesterday on the sidelines of a special business and investment forum co-hosted by QFCA and the US embassy in Qatar.
Since June, al-Jaida said 90 new firms, mostly regional and multinational corporations, are now with the QFC. “A lot of the companies that are set up in the region, specifically in the Dubai Financial Centre have actually come back home, specifically Qatari companies,” he pointed out."



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Breakup of Saudi-Russian ‘Bromance’ Would Collapse Crude Prices - Bloomberg

Breakup of Saudi-Russian ‘Bromance’ Would Collapse Crude Prices - Bloomberg:

"The Saudi- and Russia-led supply limits that have lifted crude to a 2 1/2-year high must be prolonged for an extended period or prices will collapse, said Ed Morse, global head of commodities research at Citigroup Inc. Investors already are assuming OPEC and its allied producers will agree at the end of this month to extend the limits well beyond their March expiration, Morse said at a gathering of energy economists in Houston on Monday. Morse characterized the historic 2016 rapprochement between Saudi Arabia and Russia that helped lead to the output limits as a “bromance,” and said anything short of a decisive step moving forward will disappoint traders and trigger a massive unwinding of long positions in the futures market."



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MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi, Dubai marginally higher in early trade | ZAWYA MENA Edition

MIDEAST STOCKS-Saudi, Dubai marginally higher in early trade | ZAWYA MENA Edition:

"Most Gulf stock markets were little changed in early trade on Tuesday as Saudi Arabia inched up, suggesting pressure from the kingdom's anti-corruption drive was easing.

The Saudi index was up 0.2 percent after 55 minutes of trade. In previous days, the index fell steeply in early trade as individual investors sold in response to the investigation, before buying by state-linked funds lifted the market towards the close.

The change in Tuesday's pattern suggested some confidence was returning. "



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Qatar First Bank sells stake in Amanat Holdings as Qatar-UAE ties unwind

Qatar First Bank sells stake in Amanat Holdings as Qatar-UAE ties unwind:

"Qatar First Bank (QFB) said on Tuesday that one of its units had sold its stake in United Arab Emirates healthcare and education investment firm Amanat Holdings, the latest sign of an unwinding of business ties between Qatar and the UAE. The stake was sold by QFB’s subsidiary Astro AD Cayman Ltd for 150 million UAE dirhams ($40.8 million). QFB did not disclose the size of the stake or the buyer, but said the deal value did not exceed 10 percent of the bank’s total assets. Astro AD Cayman was previously listed as owning 5 percent of Amanat, according to Thomson Reuters data."



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Dubai DGCX adds 44 blue-chip Indian single stock futures | ZAWYA MENA Edition

Dubai DGCX adds 44 blue-chip Indian single stock futures | ZAWYA MENA Edition:

"Encouraged by strong investor appetite and robust trading performance on its existing Indian Single Stock Futures (SSF), the Dubai Gold & Commodities Exchange (DGCX) said it has received regulatory approval to launch of an additional 44 blue-chip Indian SSFs, further expanding its equities asset class vertical.

The Exchange’s Indian SSFs witnessed strong growth from July to the end of October 2017, trading a total of 851,108 contracts, up ten-fold from 2016, with a value of $5.42 billion. In October, the average daily volume was 10,750 lots valued at $64 million per day, with Open Interest of 2,042 lots, the bourse said in a statement.

With the listing of additional Indian SSFs, local and regional traders can now participate in the price performance of numerous stocks that fall within the major indices in India. Additional SSFs will be listed for trading on the Exchange from December 8, 2017."



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