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Islamic Finance Briefing - Archive | August, 2010

9/11 attacks gave rise to Islamic banks: IMF

Posted on 31 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Emiratesfn.com: The 2001 September terror attacks in the United States have given rise to Islamic banks worldwide as Muslim investors kept their funds at home in&fear of any U.S. freeze decision, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has said.
But a stronger positive impact on the mushrooming of Islamic banks was the sharp rise in oil prices, which coincided with the September 11 attacks,&the IMF said in a study on Islamic banks published on its website this week……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Banks in Ramadan marketing push to spur growth: Islamic finance

Posted on 31 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

M Shaharyar UmarFrom Bloomberg: Emirates NBD PJSC of Dubai is waiving payments on personal loans for the holy month of Ramadan. Maybank Islamic Bhd. in Kuala Lumpur started automating charitable donations. Jakarta-based PT Bank Syariah Mandiri sponsors a television slot teaching Islamic banking.
Marketing campaigns aimed at reminding the world’s 1.6 billion Muslims to follow the teachings of Prophet Muhammad that ban receiving interest have increased as the global economy recovers this year, according to the Pan Arab Research Center in Dubai……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Qatar bank eyes more PE deals in Turkey

Posted on 31 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Tradearabia.com: Qatar First Investment Bank’s (QFIB) private equity arm hopes to close a second deal in Turkey and is working on two other transactions in its home market, deputy chief executive Emad Mansour said on Monday.
Privately owned QFIB announced last week that it had acquired a 40 per cent stake in Turkey’s second-largest healthcare provider, Memorial Health Group, in a joint venture with London-based private equity house Argus Capital……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Turkey’s Islamic bond market picks up; govt mulls sukuk sale

Posted on 31 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Gulf-times.com: Kuveyt Turk Katilim Bankasi is spearheading Turkey’s five-month-old Islamic bond market, planning a second sale of Shariah-compliant debt for 2012.
Kuveyt Turk, the Istanbul-based bank owned by Kuwait Finance House, may sell more than $100mn of five-year sukuk, after a similar size sale in August that was the first in the nation since regulators allowed companies to offer Islamic bonds, said chief executive officer Ufuk Uyan……………………………………….Full Article: Source

CBB sukuk oversubscribed

Posted on 31 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Tradearabia.com: The Central Bank of Bahrain (CBB) has announced that the monthly issue of its Sukuk Al-Salam Islamic securities has been oversubscribed.
Subscriptions worth BD73.5 million ($195 million) were received for the BD12 million issue, which carries a maturity of 91 days, the CBB said in a statement……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Bonds issue to pick up in Gulf as confidence returns: RBS

Posted on 31 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Gulfnews.com: More sovereign and top quality quasi-sovereign firms from Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Qatar are likely to issue debt before the end of 2010 as credit spreads tighten and investors regain confidence, a senior executive at the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) said.
“Sovereign and top quality quasi-sovereign names from Abu Dhabi, Qatar are likely to tap bond markets before the year end. Dubai is meeting investors this week and that could be a precursor of a deal from them,” Hassan Mustafa, managing director and head of the debt syndicate of Central Eastern Europe Middle East and Africa (CEEMEA) at RBS, told Zawya Dow Jones recently……………………………………….Full Article: Source

For Islamic finance in the West, vive la France

Posted on 31 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Thenational.ae: Islamic finance is a US$1 trillion (Dh3.67tn) industry and has become a part of the global financial system. The industry represents about 1.6 billion Muslims worldwide, as well as non-Muslim investors seeking to diversify their portfolios.
Institutional and private investors look to tap into a market that may reach a staggering $5tn, according to forecasts by the ratings agency Moody’s Investors Service……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Bloomberg’s defense of Ground Zero mosque related to Bloomberg business plan to dominate Islamic Finance market?

Posted on 31 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Deathby1000papercuts.com: Two companies in the financial world who turned their attention to Islamic finance and its phenomenal growth, Thomson Reuters (Reuters) and Bloomberg L.P.. Bloomberg’s market, Bloomberg’s financial news terminals. Reuter’s market, Reuter’s financial news portals.
Earlier we posted we were cynical about Mayor Bloomberg’s motives for defending the building of a controversial mosque near Ground Zero. Of concern, Bloomberg’s financial interests in the Middle East with Bloomberg L.P. establishing a financial information hub in Dubai at the Dubai International Finance Centre, DIFC……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Trial begins in Islamic charity tax case

Posted on 31 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From AP: Jury selection began Monday in the trial of a corporate officer in a defunct Islamic charity who is accused of taking $150,000 from an Egyptian donor, laundering it through the charity, and trying to send it to revolutionaries fighting to create an Islamic state in the Russian republic of Chechnya.
Pete Seda, also known as Pirouz Sedaghaty, faces charges of conspiracy, tax fraud and failing to report sending $150,000 out of the country……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Gold bullion and Islamic private equity: Protection and production, Shahzad Siddiqui & Toby Birch

Posted on 31 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Opalesque: Shahzad Siddiqui is a Toronto-based lawyer and Chief Legal Officer at Broadwater Capital Inc, a Toronto-based Islamic finance firm. He was previously an investment banker at Ittihad Securities, an Islamic private equity firm in the same city. He is an author of several Euromoney publications including Sovereign Sukuk, co-written with a manager at the Ontario Financing Authority, and Fruits of the Orchard: Endowments for Mosques and Islamic Charitable Organisations in Western and Muslim Lands.
Toby Birch is Managing Director of Oppenheim and Co Limited (investment management) and Guernsey Gold Limited (bullion dealing). He is a Chartered Fellow of the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investment and also hold’s the Institute’s Islamic Finance Qualification. He is author of The Final Crash, one of the most prescient predictions of the credit crisis published in May 2007. He was previously CEO at Blackfish Capital Holdings where he managed a resources-based hedge fund and senior investment manager at Bank Julius Baer in Guernsey……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Lex Islamicus: When Sukuk default - Asset priority of certificate-holders vis a vis creditors Mohammed Khnifer

Posted on 31 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Opalesque: Mohammed Khnifer is regarded as part of a ’second generation’ of Islamic banking practitioners who have a solid academic background in Islamic finance. He is a holder of an MSc in Investment Banking & Islamic Finance from Reading University and is a Chartered Islamic Finance Professional (CIFP) from INCEIF. He is one of the most prolific and well-known journalist specializing in Islamic Finance today. For the past six years he has been in charge of the editorial content for the Islamic Banking section of Al Eqtisadiah (Kingdom of Saudi Arabia).
Asset-backed or Asset-based Issuance? Sukuk is considered the most sought after financial instruments in the Islamic Finance industry. Western investors view them as debt-like fixed-income instruments, whereas Muslim investors purchase them as it complies with their religious beliefs, but at the same time serve their needs for relatively less-risk investments than equities or real estate……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Shariah compliant structured product: Consecutive or rolled Murabaha Nikan Firoozye, PhD

Posted on 31 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Opalesque: Nikan has over 14 years experience in leading Wall Street and City firms on the buy and sell-side including Lehman Brothers, Goldman-Sachs, Deutsche Bank, Sanford Bernstein Alliance, Citadel and Nomura where he is currently Head of European Rates Strategy. He has worked in a variety of primarily technical or quantitative fixed income roles from Rates & Hybrids Structuring to Rates Strategy and Quantitative Modelling to Asset Allocation and Risk Management to Prepayment Analysis and Securitization and Capital Markets. Education: PhD Mathematics (Courant Institute, NYU), Asst Prof University of Illinois.
Structured Product, by its nature is something that can deliver diverse risky cashflows to investors. Delivering this to a conventional investor involves hedging, sometimes statically, sometimes dynamically with vanilla options, swaps and swaptions, basis and asset swaps, correlation products and a whole host of other ’slightly less exotic’ products. That being said, structured product is a huge business, one that generates large returns for banks (less so recently) and to a certain extent encourages Islamic Structuring desks to look for ways to deliver the same cashflows to Islamic investors……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Islamic funds: Sink or swim

Posted on 31 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Islamicfinanceasia.com: Despite the enormous economic strides made by the Islamic financial realm in recent years, Islamic funds have been substantially lagging behind. The recently published Islamic Funds & Investments Report 2010 by Ernst & Young revealed global Islamic fund assets barely grew in size at US$52.3 billion in 2009 compared to US$51.4 billion in 2008.
Overall, the Islamic asset management industry, including funds and Islamic investment accounts, has reached US$292 billion. In comparison, the global conventional fund industry is beginning to exhibit signs of recovery from their lows of US$19 trillion in 2008, reaching US$22 trillion in 2009……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Gaddafi causes storm in Italy with Islam comments

Posted on 31 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Reuters: Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi’s invitation to hundreds of young women to convert to Islam overshadowed a two-day visit to Italy intended to cement the growing ties between Tripoli and Rome.
Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi hailed Italy’s relationship with Libya at an evening ceremony on Monday attended by some of the biggest names in Italian business, many hoping to pick up lucrative contracts in the energy-rich North African state……………………………………….Full Article: Source

France eyes top spot in Islamic finance industry

Posted on 30 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Dr Mohamad Nedal Alchaar From Gulf-times.com: Islamic finance is a trillion dollar industry and has become part of the global financial system. The industry represents around 1.6bn Muslims worldwide as well as non-Muslim investors seeking to diversify their portfolio.

Institutional and private investors look to tap into a market that may reach a staggering $5tn, according to forecasts by rating agency Moody’s. France has skilfully anchored into this dynamic terrain but the question really is — What does France need to do to tap completely into this market and become the capital markets’ centre for Islamic financing in the western world?……………………………………Full Article: Source

IIT debut sukuk in UK may lead to spate of new issuances

Posted on 30 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Arabnews.com: The recent launching of the first corporate Sukuk out of the UK by Gateshead-based International Innovative Technologies (IIT) may have taken the Islamic capital markets by surprise, but the signs are that a spate of other UK originations may follow over the next few months.

A major GCC-based sukuk arranger confirmed that it has been working on a corporate sukuk issuance for a UK healthcare company for the last year. The company hopes to launch the issuance next month. A London-based Islamic bank is also working on a sukuk issuance for a UK client which is near to being finalized…………………………………….Full Article: Source

IDB gears up to launch sukuk offering under MTN program

Posted on 30 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Arabnews.com: The Jeddah-based Islamic Development Bank (IDB) is gearing up for its latest sukuk offering under its Medium Term Note (MTN) or Trust Certificate Issuance Program, which was officially increased this month from $1.5 billion to $3.5 billion.

The IDB, according to Mohamed Tariq, senior adviser to the President Ahmad Mohamed Ali, was poised to go to the international financial markets in September this year to raise in excess of $850 million in a sukuk issuance under its $3.5 billion MTN Program. September will be a difficult month because it coincides with the end of the holy month of fasting, Ramadan, and the subsequent Eid holidays…………………………………….Full Article: Source

IDB to list Sukuk in London and Kuala Lumpur

Posted on 30 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Cpifinancial.net: The Islamic Development Bank (IDB) is to dual list some $1 billion of Sukuk in tranches of five, seven and 10 years as part of its $3.5 billion Medium-Term Note program.

The issue, due in Q4 2010, follows the IDB’s listing this month of MYR 1 billion ($318 million) on Bursa Malaysia via the IDB’s special purpose vehicle, Tadamun Sevices Bhd – the bank’s first MYR-denominated Sukuk. The MYR Sukuk, of which some MYR400 million has already been sold, is listed under the exempt regime basis and is not quoted or traded on the exchange…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Asia dollar sukuk yields slump as US recovery is flagging

Posted on 30 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Gulf-times.com: Yields on Asia’s dollar Islamic bonds have slumped to the lowest levels in three months relative to local-currency debt on evidence that the US economic recovery is flagging as growth accelerates across the region.
The difference between the yield on the Malaysian government’s 3.928% five-year dollar sukuk and the similar-maturity 3.86% ringgit Islamic note widened five basis points this month to 67, prices from Bursa Malaysia and Royal Bank of Scotland Group show…………………………………….Full Article: Source

S Korea reviving sukuk bill opposed by pastors

Posted on 30 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Gulf-times.com: South Korean lawmakers may revive legislation scuttled earlier this year amid opposition from church leaders that would pave the way for the first Islamic bond sales in the country.

A group of legislators will review the proposal as early as November regulating taxes on sukuk, or bonds that comply with Shariah law, said Choi Sung Soo, assistant director of the office of the committee’s Chairman Kang Ghil Boo……………………………………Full Article: Source

Iranian Minister: Islamic banks, safe from crises

Posted on 30 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Abna.ir: Minister of Economic Affairs and Finance Shamseddin Hosseini said on Saturday the Islamic banks and the Islamic financial institutions have been safe from the recent world recession.
Ahlul Bayt News Agency, Talking to reporters on the sidelines of the 21st Conference on the Islamic Banking System in Tehran, Hosseini said the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) has not also been hurt by the world economic crisis…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Qatar bank eyeing acquisitions

Posted on 30 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Zawya.com: Qatar First Investment Bank (QFIB) plans to spend $500 million (Dh1.8 billion) on acquisitions in Turkey’s energy and finance industries, chairman Abdullah Bin Fahad Bin Ghorab Al Merri said.

He was speaking at a news conference in Istanbul where the Doha lender said it partnered with London private equity house Argus Capital to acquire a 40 per cent stake in Turkey’s Memorial Health Group (MHG). Each will hold a 20 per cent stake, he said…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Qatar First Investment Bank acquires a stake in a leading Turkish based healthcare provider

Posted on 30 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Albawaba.com: Qatar First Investment Bank (QFIB) announced that along with ARGUS Capital, a London based private equity house, acquired a 40% minority stake in Memorial Health Group (MHG), one of the leading healthcare providers in Turkey.

MHG began operations in February 2000 and is among the top two ‘class A’ healthcare groups in Turkey, offering high quality service with well respected physicians and state-of-the-art equipment…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Qatar banks need new income to keep growing

Posted on 30 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Thepeninsulaqatar.com: Pursuing new avenues of growth such as wealth management is critical for Qatari banks if they want to flourish in an overcrowded market and achieve a regional role that matches the country’s economic super status.

With a soaring economy and a gross domestic product expected to grow 16 percent this year, Qatar’s economic outlook is among the world’s brightest. But the financial windfall that has showered it in wealth will not be sufficient alone to propel its domestic banks to a more dominant role in the Gulf region…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Emirates NBD becomes first overseas bank to introduce electronic payment for Government services

Posted on 30 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Albawaba.com: Emirates NBD, a leading bank in the region, has today joined the ranks of major Saudi banks, by becoming the first overseas bank to offer customers the electronic bill payment system or SADAD.
The payment facility, managed by the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA), offers customers the convenience of making direct payments for a host of services such as utility bills and, now, government services. In addition, customers are able to have any payments returned to them via the same system, where refunds may be applicable…………………………………….Full Article: Source

KFH focuses on paradigm recruitment, not quantitative

Posted on 30 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Arabtimesonline.com: The Human Resources and Services Department Manager at Kuwait Finance House (KFH) Mohammed Al-Jallal announced that KFH’s recruitment strategy focuses on paradigm recruitment, not quantitative, which allows KFH to recruit competent and specialized employees and thus making them an added value to all of the bank’s sectors.
He added that the employees are continuously exposed to paradigm training programs, which meets KFH’s local and overseas expansion strategy as a global banking institution that offers its products and services in many markets around the world, in addition to increasing the competition among the Islamic banking sector…………………………………….Full Article: Source

SFG to facilitate Islamic refinancing of Kingdom Center

Posted on 30 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Arabnews.com: Kingdom Holding Company (KHC), chaired by Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, has announced a SR700-million refinancing of Kingdom Center (Trade Center Company Ltd.), chaired by Talal Ibrahim Al-Maiman, executive director for development and domestic investments and KHC board member.
The refinancing is Shariah-compliant through Samba Financial Group (SFG) for expansion and investment purposes. KHC holds a 36 percent interest in Kingdom Center…………………………………….Full Article: Source

S&P Fund Services assigns ‘A’ rating to three Emirates NBD Multi Asset and MENA Equity Funds

Posted on 30 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Albawaba.com: Emirates NBD, a leading bank in the region, announced today that Standard & Poor’s Fund Services has assigned an ‘A’ fund rating to Emirates NBD Asset Management’s three global, multi-asset class funds, making them the first managed funds with such a diverse asset allocation to receive an S&P fund rating in the GCC.
Emirates NBD Asset Management currently has approximately US$1.6billion of assets under management across a range of mandates…………………………………….Full Article: Source

DMCC, S&P in war of words after rating withdrawal

Posted on 30 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Emirates247.com: Dubai Multi Commodities Centre Authority is embroiled in a war of words with Standard & Poor’s after the ratings agency said that DMCC will face cash flow problem this year.

S&P also on Saturday withdrew DMCC rating on the company’s request. Prior to withdrawal, the ratings agency reviewed the long-term rating and maintained it on CreditWatch…………………………………….Full Article: Source

August 2010: M&A deals amount to US$ 941 million in ME

Posted on 30 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Albawaba.com: According to Zephyr Monthly Review, the value of M&A deals targeting the Middle East trebled month-on-month to US$ 941 million in August 2010, though the result was flattered by a poor result from July 2010 and stood just 4 per cent higher than the USD 908 million recorded in August 2009.
There was a strong monthly gain in value despite deal volume being down 28 per cent from 76 transactions to 55. Meanwhile, the number of deals targeting companies based in the Middle East has doubled since August 2009…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Meeting fatigue in Islamic finance

Posted on 30 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Gulfnews.com: One of the silver linings from the dark cloud of the credit crisis is, thankfully, fewer Islamic finance conferences, as the global downturn weeded out those entities that were in it just for the money.

There are a handful of conference organisers, and their contribution needs to be acknowledged for their commitment. The major Islamic conference organisers have macro programmes spread over two days and include Euromoney (UK), Mega (Bahrain), IIR ME (Dubai), and CERT (Malaysia)…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Co-founder of Islamic charity goes on trial

Posted on 30 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From AP: The gates are rusted and the American flags are gone from the house on the outskirts of this small tourist town that once served as U.S. headquarters for an Islamic charity that was declared a terrorist organization by the U.S. government.

But despite six years of trying, federal investigators have not brought terrorism charges against the Iranian-born tree trimmer and naturalized American citizen who co-founded the American branch of Al-Haramain Islamic Foundation, Inc., or his fellow foundation officer living in Saudi Arabia…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Affin, HK partner plan first Islamic bank in China

Posted on 27 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Dr David K.P LiFrom Btimes.com.my: Affin Holdings Bhd and its foreign partner, Hong Kong’s The Bank of East Asia Ltd, have submitted a proposal to the China Banking Regulation Authority (CBRA) to open China’s first Islamic bank.
“CBRA is currently still studying the regulation and practices of Islamic finance. We hope to be the first Islamic bank in China once the authority has come up with the regulations,” said BEA chairman and chief executive officer Dr David K.P Li in Kuala Lumpur………………………………………Full Article: Source

Malaysia central bank sharia advisers forbid forward forex fee

Posted on 27 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

Megat Hizaini HassanFrom Reuters: The Malaysian central bank’s sharia advisers have outlawed the payment of a fee to support a pledge made in Islamic forward foreign currency transactions, saying such charges contravene the religion.
Islamic banks tend to levy a payment when a promise or “waad” is made to enter into a forward foreign currency hedging contract to reflect the parties’ commitment to the transaction……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Kazakhstan pushes Islamic finance after banking crisis

Posted on 27 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Gulf-times.com: Seeking to diversify its financial industry after a banking crisis, oil-rich Kazakhstan is drawing on Arab and Malaysian investment in an effort to build an Islamic finance industry among its 13mn Muslims.
Its success may depend on the fate of pioneer investors and the commitment of its secular government to clear the way for a long-awaited sovereign issue of sukuk, or Islamic bonds, which could prompt other issuers to follow……………………………………….Full Article: Source

BNI Syariah seeks partnership with foreign investors

Posted on 27 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Thejakartapost.com: BNI Syariah, a unit of Malaysia’s fourth-largest lender, Bank Negara Indonesia (BNI), says it wants to partner with foreign investors to expand its sharia banking business.
BNI Syariah president director Rizqullah said in Jakarta on Wednesday that the bank was negotiating a partnership with the Islamic Development Bank’s private financing arm, the Islamic Corporation for Development (ICD)……………………………………….Full Article: Source

CIMB Group Q2 profit up 34pct

Posted on 27 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Thestar.com.my: CIMB Group Holdings Bhd posted its best three- and six-month performance when it announced its second quarter results to June 30 on the back of a strong rebound in corporate and investment banking, a surge in contribution from PT Bank CIMB Niaga and drop in loan loss provisions.
CIMB reported a 34.1% increase in net profit of RM889mil for the second quarter compared with the previous corresponding period. Revenue was up 16.59% to RM3.02bil. These results are in line with analysts’ expectations……………………………………….Full Article: Source

CIMB invests in foreign cash ATMs

Posted on 27 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Thestar.com.my: CIMB Bank is investing about RM4mil to set up South East Asia’s first foreign cash automated teller machines (ATMs) in Malaysia, says head of retail banking Peter England.
“The RM4mil investment is for seven target locations in Malaysia to have the new ATMs service by end of this year. We are also targeting to add 13 more locations for the machines in the next six months……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Al Baraka-ICD deal to benefit private sector

Posted on 27 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Tradearabia.com: Al Baraka Banking Group has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD), the investment arm of the Islamic Development Bank.
ICD’s goal is to assist private sector companies and institutions in the Organisation of Islamic Conference countries and enhance co-operation between them……………………………………….Full Article: Source

ADIB in $300mln Shah Gas backing for Al-Jaber

Posted on 27 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Tradearabia.com: Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (Adib), a top-tier Islamic financial services group, has provided financing facilities to Al-Jaber Energy Services (AJES) for the amount of $300 million to finance Shah Gas project.
The project was awarded to AJES by Abu Dhabi Gas Development, a subsidiary of Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) and is part of the $12 billion Shah sour gas field development which is essential to meet Abu Dhabi’s surging gas demand……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Moody’s cautious on Islamic banking?

Posted on 27 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Arabianbusiness.com: Most Gulf countries predicate their domestic fiscal budgets on an oil price of $40 to $50 a barrel. Anything more than that, as the kids say, is gravy.
Moody’s reckons Bahrain now needs the oil price to be around the $80 mark to balance the books, a state of affairs that it says also makes it cautious on the Kingdom’s economic outlook. It points out that last year Bahrain had a budget deficit of 7.3 percent of GDP, although it does concede this is likely to narrow to 0.8 percent in 2010……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Malaysia rules in Islamic finance

Posted on 27 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Businessweek.com: Bonds, home mortgages, and other financial assets that comply with Islamic law, which prohibits the charging or paying of interest, have gained in popularity throughout the Muslim world.
A lot of high-paying jobs and national prestige are up for grabs for the country that can position itself as the hub of global Islamic finance. Persian Gulf states such as Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, and Bahrain have sought to build out their financial-service sectors to accommodate the expanding demand……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Asia, Gulf sovereign sukuk returns beat company debt amid growth

Posted on 27 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Gulf-times.com: Sovereign Islamic bonds from Asia to the Arabian Gulf are beating returns on corporate sukuk for the first time in three months as accelerating economic growth and rising oil revenue shore up state finances.
Government debt that complies with the religion’s ban on interest gained 1.7% so far this month, according to the HSBC/Nasdaq Dubai Sovereign US Dollar Sukuk Index, more than the 1.1% advance in bonds issued by companies……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Nakheel new bond fair value estimated at low 60 cents

Posted on 27 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Bloomberg: Nakheel PJSC’s proposed sukuk to settle trade creditor claims is estimated to have a fair value in the low 60 cents to the dollar, JPMorgan Chase & Co. said.
The property company, controlled by state-owned Dubai World, will be able to make almost all coupon payments on the five-year Islamic bonds although “we are less confident about Nakheel’s ability to redeem the principal in 2015,” JPMorgan analyst Zafar Nazim wrote in a research note e-mailed today……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Indonesia raises $37.45 mln in sukuk private placement

Posted on 27 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Reuters: Indonesia’s finance ministry sold 336 billion rupiah ($37.45 million) of Islamic-compliant bonds, known as sukuk, to the religious affairs ministry through a private placement, the debt office said late on Wednesday.
The bonds will help fund a budget deficit seen at 1.5 percent of gross domestic product this year……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Turkey’s 1st Islamic bond sale draws big response

Posted on 27 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Gulf-times.com: Turkey’s first Islamic bond, from lender Kuveyt Turk, will pay a coupon of 5.25% and was 45% oversubscribed by investors, sources familiar with the matter said.
Kuveyt Turk, which is majority-owned by Kuwait Finance House, launched the three-year $100mn sukuk on August 17, paving the way for other Turkish companies to tap the growing Islamic finance market……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Qatar Exchange’s Went says bonds require new rules

Posted on 27 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Bloomberg: The Qatar Exchange, the Persian Gulf country’s equity market, must draft new listing rules before trading in bonds and Islamic debt can begin, according to Andre Went, the bourse’s chief executive officer .
“We are drafting new rules for the bonds,” Went told reporters at a seminar in the Qatari capital of Doha late yesterday. The rules would relate to information disclosure and the size of the bonds by issuers, he said……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Dow Jones Islamic Market Indexes Titans 100 Index drops 3.4pct

Posted on 27 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Bi-me.com: Based on the close of trading on August 24 the global Dow Jones Islamic Market Titans 100 Index, which measures the performance of 100 of the leading Shari’ah compliant stocks globally, dropped -3.45% month-to-date, closing at 1888.71.
In comparison, the Dow Jones Global Titans 50 Index, which measures the 50 biggest companies worldwide, posted a loss of -3.65%, closing at 152.75……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Dow Jones Islamic Market Indexes in August: East Asia bucks the trend

Posted on 27 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Bi-me.com: “Double-Dip concerns everywhere,” is the title of Credit Suisse’s research daily as of August 25. News spreading during the summer has been in fact less than encouraging.
U. S. Home sales plummeted 27% in July to an annual rate of 3.83 million units, the lowest sales pace since the National Association of Realtors began tracking the figure in 1999. Volatile stock markets along with fickle oil prices are the result, and, in addition, the Dollar fell to 15-year low against the Yen……………………………………….Full Article: Source

UAE insurance premiums to jump 76pct in next four years

Posted on 27 August 2010 by Laxman  |  Email|Print

From Emirates247.com: Total premiums earned by UAE insurance companies are expected to jump 76 per cent to Dh33.48 billion over the next four years from Dh19 billion at the end of 2009. Oman Insurance Company accounts for one-fifth of the total premiums written by national companies.
According to a study by Research and Markets, Oman Insurance, the largest local player, makes up 14 per cent of total premiums followed by Abu Dhabi National Insurance Company (Adnic) and Islamic Arab Insurance Company, which are about half the size of Oman Insurance Co……………………………………….Full Article: Source

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