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Reinsurance allocation primed for growth at Future Fund

Posted on 31 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

In its 2015-2016 annual report, Australian sovereign wealth investment fund, the Future Fund, confirmed that it’s added a second manager to its reinsurance portfolio, which the fund says will facilitate potential expansion of this exposure in the future.
The Future Fund utilises reinsurance as part of its alternative risk premia strategy, and following its $100 million allocation to Elementum in 2015, the addition of insurance and reinsurance-linked investment manager Kiskadee was announced earlier this year……………………………………..Full Article: Source

‘New debt crisis’ looms at 1MDB-linked SRC

Posted on 31 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Government-owned investment company might sell off assets to China firms in return for fresh capital, according to Singapore report. A looming debt crisis hangs over former 1MDB subsidiary SRC International, which borrowed RM4 billion from a civil servants’ pension fund, according to a Singapore news report.
Malaysian government negotiators were seeking a China-led takeover of SRC assets in return for fresh capital that will help finance the 10-year loan from Kumpulan Wang Persaraan (KWAP), according to the Singapore Straits Times……………………………………..Full Article: Source

SAMA ‘did not issue warning on expat loans’, says Saudi official

Posted on 28 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Industry body said to deny Saudi banks were warned against lending to expats. Reports that Saudi Arabia’s central bank had issued a directive asking banks to stop offering loans to expats amid nationwide austerity cuts have been dismissed, according to local media.
An official from the kingdom’s banking awareness committee told Saudi Gazette that the Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency (SAMA) had “nothing to do” with individual banks’ lending decisions and issued no such circular……………………………………Full Article: Source

Future Fund hopes to scale reinsurance allocation

Posted on 28 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Australia’s Future Fund confirmed that it had added a second manager to its reinsurance portfolio, saying this gave it the potential to increase its exposure in the future.
The sovereign wealth fund includes reinsurance in its alternative risk premia strategy, which made up 10 percent or A$1.68bn ($1.24bn) of its A$16.8bn broader alternatives portfolio as of 30 June 2016, according to its newly released 2015-16 annual report……………………………………Full Article: Source

Here’s how Australia’s Future Fund performed last financial year

Posted on 28 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Australia’s sovereign wealth fund, the Future Fund, released its 2015/16 annual report on Thursday, a 188-page behemoth detailing what it got up to last financial year, overall performance, and its views on the outlook for asset markets.
This nifty infographic from the fund shows how it performed, and performance over time compared to its set mandate, along with the asset allocation mix at June 30……………………………………Full Article: Source

1MDB yet to find new auditor

Posted on 28 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

This means 1MDB is unable to submit its financial statement despite being given two six-month extensions by the Companies Commission of Malaysia, says report. 1MDB has yet to appoint a new auditor to take over from Deloitte Malaysia, which resigned in July, Second Finance Minister Johari Abdul Ghani said.
The state investment arm’s failure to find a new auditor also means that it is unable to submit its financial statement ending March 31, 2015 despite being given two six-month extensions by the Companies Commission of Malaysia (CCM), Malaysiakini reported……………………………………Full Article: Source

High Returns? No(r)way!

Posted on 28 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s Government Pension Fund, known as the Oil Fund, is the largest sovereign wealth fund in the world, commanding around US$900b of surplus wealth produced by Norwegian petroleum income. With a current allocation to equities of 60%, up from 40% in 2007, the Oil Fund is also a key player in global financial markets.
The Financial Times estimates that on average the Oil Fund owns 1.3% of every listed company in the world and 2.5% in Europe. The Oil Fund’s significance to world equity markets is poised to increase……………………………………Full Article: Source

Kazak SWF chief looks to increase pace of privatisation

Posted on 27 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Kazakhstan’s sovereign wealth fund, Samruk-Kazyna, is looking to finally privatise many of its assets, after a series of false starts. The current privatisation push entails the transition of assets currently belonging to [the country’s sovereign wealth fund] Samruk-Kazyna towards a more competitive environment.
The 44 largest companies in our portfolio will be largely privatised through initial public offerings [IPOs], in both the local and foreign markets. The percentage of capital on sale will vary case by case. It could be about 20% to 25%; although for assets where foreign investors are already part of the ownership structure, as is the case with [flagship air carrier] Air Astana, we will be looking to become minority shareholders…………………………………..Full Article: Source

Muhyiddin: 1MDB debts threaten 2017 Budget

Posted on 27 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The government is paying for 1MDB’s debts, so former DPM wonders whether it can afford to fulfil all promises made in Budget. Former Deputy Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin has questioned the government’s ability to make good promises made in the 2017 Budget as issues related to 1MDB remain unresolved.
In stating so, the Pagoh lawmaker noted that the state investment arm was not mentioned in the recently tabled budget, specifically debts incurred by 1MDB, which he argued would exceed the prescribed limit of 55 per cent of the gross domestic product (GDP)…………………………………..Full Article: Source

Australian SWF exceeds expectations

Posted on 24 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Australian sovereign wealth fund (SWF) and long-term savings vehicle Future Fund has secured investment returns of A$62 billion (US$47.3 billion) in the financial year ended June 30, 2016, boosting the fund’s total AUM to A$122.8 billion.
David Neal, managing director of the Future Fund, pointed out that the board considers returns over ten-year rolling periods as a suitable performance measure for the fund, given its long-term investment mandate. “As we were set up in 2006, this was the first time we were able to report a ten-year return,” he remarked, adding that the returns had exceeded the initial benchmark target of 6.9% per annum to reach 7.7%………………………………………Full Article: Source

Temasek-linked companies given access to unlimited tax dollars?

Posted on 24 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Temasek-linked companies seem to have access to unlimited tax dollars. In June last year, TLC Surbana Jurong (SJ) acquired KTP Consultants and Sinosun Architects & Engineers. Surbana Jurong intends to continue acquiring companies to morph into a global player and money will not be an issue. CEO Wong Heang Fine confirmed this when he said “..there’s no limit to the amount that we are willing to spend as long as it fits our growth strategies.”
It is strange for Temasek-linked companies to be acquiring companies as if there’s no tomorrow because ample warnings – inflated asset prices and weaker returns – have been sounded. Even by its sister company, GIC………………………………………Full Article: Source

Leonardo DiCaprio vows to return charity funds if they came from 1MDB

Posted on 20 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

American actor and climate change activist Leonardo DiCaprio has vowed to return any gifts or donations made to him or any of his ventures if they are found to have come from Malaysia’s sovereign fund, 1Malaysia Development Berhad.
1MDB is currently under investigation by various governments, including the US Department of Justice, over money laundering and corruption allegations. In his first public comment on the investigations into 1MDB, DiCaprio said that he was cooperating with US authorities to determine whether money received by any of his charitable foundations had come from questionable sources……………………………………Full Article: Source

Norway wealth fund should shift more money to equities from bonds

Posted on 19 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s sovereign wealth fund should raise the proportion of its investments in equities to 70 percent from 60 percent to the detriment of its bond holdings, the majority on a government-appointed commission said on Tuesday.
Its chairman dissented, saying equity holdings should be cut. If the increase was done today, it would mean the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund, currently valued at $875 billion, would move $87 billion into equities away from government bonds, whose low interest rates are dragging down the fund’s return…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Peter Costello warns on Australian finances, Future Fund returns

Posted on 19 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Former Howard government treasurer Peter Costello has warned that Australia’s financial position is “not strong” and that returns from the Future Fund he chairs will be weaker.
Speaking to The Business presenter Ticky Fullerton at a Walkley Foundation function, Mr Costello defended his record as treasurer, and issued a warning to his latest successor Scott Morrison. “Our financial position in Australia at the moment is not strong,” Mr Costello lamented. “We are now in our ninth year in a row of budget deficit.”……………………………………Full Article: Source

Leo DiCaprio’s Charity Will Reportedly Return Over $1 Million in Donations from Shady Malaysian Fund

Posted on 19 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

This summer, Leonardo DiCaprio’s charity was publicly linked to a multibillion-dollar scandal by the Department of Justice. Now, as pressure from the international community mounts, the A-lister’s non-profit has released a statement explaining that they intend to return some of the funds in question:
“Several months ago in July, Mr. DiCaprio first learned through press reports of the government’s civil action against some of the parties involved in the making of The Wolf of Wall Street,” the statement says, via The Hollywood Reporter…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Alaska Permanent plans to double assets managed internally

Posted on 18 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Alaska Permanent Fund Corp., Juneau, unveiled a five-year investment management plan on Sept. 28 that aims to nearly double the assets it internally manages and also introduces a new target allocation.
The $54.8 billion sovereign wealth fund routinely reviews its investment philosophy every five years, and one conclusion as part of the review was to further its capabilities in internal management, said CEO Angela Rodell in a telephone interview…………………………………..Full Article: Source

Biggest wealth fund recommends raising stock holdings to 62.5%

Posted on 17 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s US$890 billion (S$1.23 trillion) sovereign wealth fund recommended raising its proportion of stocks to 62.5 per cent of its total holdings to keep the same risk levels as it prepares to separate out real estate from its main fund.
The fund assumes a market risk of 0.5 on its unlisted real estate, meaning that the return on these assets moves in the same direction, but not as much, as the broad equity market, it said in a letter to Finance Ministry……………………………………..Full Article: Source

KIC suffers paper loss of nearly 1 tln won this year

Posted on 17 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Korea Investment Corp. (KIC), South Korea’s sovereign wealth fund, suffered a paper loss of nearly 1 trillion won (US$883 million) in its overseas stock investments in the first eight months of this year, an opposition lawmaker said Friday.
The KIC had minus 2 percent in its return in its direct investments in overseas stocks in the January-August period, compared with a 0.53 percent gain in the full year 2015, Kim Jong-min, a lawmaker of the main opposition Minjoo Party, said in a report for an annual parliamentary audit of the government……………………………………..Full Article: Source

SOFAZ reveals economic indices

Posted on 14 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Azerbaijan’s state oil fund SOFAZ, which accumulates and manages the energy-rich country’s oil and gas revenues, has managed to derive profit and raise its revenues by benefiting from the currency exchange rate differences.
Year to date, the Fund gained some 2.5 billion manats ($ 1.56 billion) [non-budget gains], due to differences in the currency rates. Fund’s CEO Shahmar Movsumov, speaking at a press conference on October 12, said that SOFAZ assets increased by 6.7 percent compared to early 2016, and amounted to $35.82 billion, mentioning that profit and expenditures of the Fund stood at 6.62 billion manats ($ 4.13 billion) and 3.82 billion manats ($ 2.38 billion), respectively……………………………………Full Article: Source

SOFAZ: Azerbaijan’s status in EITI not to affect financing for Southern Gas Corridor

Posted on 14 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The status of Azerbaijan in the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) will be discussed on 26 October. Shahmar Movsumov, executive director of the State oil Fund of Azerbaijan (SOFAZ), has stated that the EITI Board’s meeting will take place in Astana, Kazakhstan.
“During the meeting the parties will discuss Azerbaijan’s status in the EITI. The lack of country’s full membership in the EITI will not prevent to raise the financing for such international energy projects as the Southern Gas Corridor,” Movsumov said……………………………………Full Article: Source

Swiss bank ‘moved’ $US3.8bn for 1MDB

Posted on 14 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Switzerland’s Office of the Attorney-General has expanded its scrutiny of Malaysian public investment fund 1Malaysia Development, or 1MDB, by opening a criminal investigation into a small Swiss lender recently penalised for its ties to the fund.
The Swiss lawyer general’s ­office said that internal “deficiencies” at Zurich-based Falcon ­Private Bank might have caused it to fail to prevent alleged money laundering associated with 1MDB. The Swiss authorities opened a broad 1MDB investigation last year, and have previously said they placed another Swiss bank, BSI, under a related criminal probe. The status of that investigation remains unclear……………………………………..Full Article: Source

Where in the 1MDB scandal is Falcon Bank?

Posted on 14 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

First it was BSI Bank. Then came Falcon Private Bank. One after another, Swiss prosecutors are putting banks under scrutiny over the 1MDB scandal. Last Wednesday, the Swiss attorney-general’s office (OAG) announced that it is initiating criminal proceedings against Falcon, after doing the same with BSI on May 23.
The Singaporeans had also acted, with the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) ordering Falcon to close its Singapore unit and pay a S$4.3 million (US$3.11 million) fine. In this instalment of KiniGuide, we take a look at Falcon and how it got into so much trouble……………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway’s wealth fund says sterling flash crash reflects economic prospects

Posted on 13 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Norwegian wealth fund owns shares in most top British companies and holds $11 billion in UK government bonds. It co-owns Regent Street, one of London’s premier shopping areas. Britain is its second-largest investment location after the United States, accounting for 10.2 percent of the fund’s value at end-2015.
Before and after the vote to leave the European Union, the fund said it would remain a long-term investor in Britain despite “question marks” as to what Brexit would look like, once it has been negotiated………………………………….Full Article: Source

SOFAZ planning to increase its assets in 2017

Posted on 13 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The State Oil Fund of Azerbaijan (SOFAZ) is planning to increase its assets by $1 billion in 2017, SOFAZ CEO Shahmar Movsumov said Oct. 12 at a press conference in Baku. Movsumov noted that SOFAZ’s assets are forecast at the level of $34 billion in 2016.
“A balanced budget, where oil prices are considered at $40 per barrel, will be effective in 2017,” he added. As of Oct. 1, 2016, SOFAZ’s assets increased by 6.7 percent and amounted to $35.82 billion as compared to $33.57 billion in early 2016………………………………….Full Article: Source

Oil Fund’s assets exceed $35.8 bn

Posted on 13 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The assets of the State Oil Fund of Azerbaijan (SOFAZ) increased by 6.7% for Jan-Sept 2016. According to the Fund, its assets for the reported period grew from $33.57 bn up to $35.82 bn. SOFAZ revenue was estimated at AZN 6.618 bn and expenditures at AZN 3.82 bn.
The basis of revenue for the past 3 quarters included revenue within the PSA contracts (AZN 5.88 bn), including AZN 5.867 bn from the sale of oil and gas, AZN 100,000 of bonuses, AZN 13.4 million from transit fees, and AZN 3.3 million of acre payments. The revenues from Fund’s managing assets amounted to about AZN 734.8 million………………………………….Full Article: Source

Azeri oil fund SOFAZ assets stand at $35.8 bln in Jan-Sept, flat y/y

Posted on 13 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The assets of Azerbaijan’s state oil fund SOFAZ totalled $35.822 billion in January-September, flat on the same year-ago period, but 6.7 percent higher than at the befinning of 2016, the fund’s executive director, Shakhmar Movsumov, said on Wednesday.
SOFAZ’s investment potrfolio shrank by 5.2 percent year-on-year to $33.95 billion in the first January-September, Movsumov told reporters………………………………….Full Article: Source

Saudi wealth fund to cut back on lending in transformation plan

Posted on 13 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund is set to cut back on lending to domestic projects, which has increased by more than 80 per cent over the past five years, as part of plans to transform the institution into the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund.
Loans by the PIF, as the fund is known, rose to 104 billion riyals ($27.5 billion; Dh101.7 billion) at the end of 2015, from 57 billion riyals at the end of 2011, according to information in Saudi Arabia’s sovereign bond prospectus. In the future, the PIF “will not act as a source of lending to the same extent that it has historically,” according to the document………………………………….Full Article: Source

MAB doesn’t need additional funding from Khazanah

Posted on 13 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Malaysia Airlines Bhd (MAB) does not need additional funding from Khazanah Nasional Bhd and it is confident of performing better in the immediate future on the back of solid bookings from November this year until March next year. Chief Executive Officer Peter Bellew said the airline was currently operating with a load factor of up to 73 per cent and it was targeting higher load factor of 80 per cent over the next 18 months.
“Bookings for November and December are looking very good. We expect a lot of inbound tourists for January to March next year. There are no plans to ask for more funding as agreed upon with Khazanah………………………………….Full Article: Source

India Value Fund competes with TPG-Temasek to take control of KIMS Hospital

Posted on 13 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Home grown private equity investor India Value Fund and its limited partners — Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) and Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA) — are fighting against a consortium of heavyweights TPG Capital Management and Singapore sovereign fund Temasek Holdings to buy controlling stake in Kerala Institute of Medical Sciences (KIMS) in the final lap of the the race for Thiruvananthapuram-based hospital chain.
The proposed transaction will value KIMS Healthcare Management (KIMS) at Rs 1,300 crore, according to people familiar with the matter and would mark the second private equity transaction in the healthcare sector in South India in a span of three months………………………………….Full Article: Source

Saudi Wealth Fund to Cut Back on Lending in Transformation Plan

Posted on 12 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund is set to cut back on lending to domestic projects, which has increased by more than 80 percent over the past five years, as part of plans to transform the institution into the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund.
Loans by the PIF, as the fund is known, rose to 104 billion riyals ($27.5 billion) at the end of 2015, from 57 billion riyals at the end of 2011, according to information in Saudi Arabia’s sovereign bond prospectus. In the future, the PIF “will not act as a source of lending to the same extent that it has historically,” according to the document………………………………………Full Article: Source

Spain’s Abertis agrees to sell 20 pct stake in Chile unit to ADIA

Posted on 11 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Spain’s Abertis said on Monday it had agreed to sell a 20 percent minority stake in its Chilean unit to the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA) for 495 million euros ($554 million). The sale values the unit, which runs 771 kilometers of highways through six concessions in the country, at a total of 3.7 billion euros including debt, Abertis said in a statement.
The Spanish company will continue to run the company and will hold the remaining 80 percent stake………………………………….Full Article: Source

Fayemi negotiates $500m mining investment fund with NSIA

Posted on 11 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Minister of Solid Minerals Development, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, has disclosed that he is currently negotiating a $500 million investment fund with the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA), managers of Nigeria’s Sovereign Wealth Fund, to support a long term development plan for the country’s mining sector.
Speaking in an interview at the weekend in Abuja, Fayemi said the Federal Executive Council (FEC) in August approved a new roadmap for the development of the mining sector, adding that with a proactive execution of the roadmap, the sector was expected to contribute up to $27 billion to Nigeria’s Gross Domestic Products (GDP) ratio by 2025………………………………….Full Article: Source

BSI bankers charged with 1MDB offences

Posted on 11 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Singaporean authorities have charged two senior private bankers at the Singapore branch of Swiss-based BSI bank for alleged fraud and corruption in relation to the ongoing investigation into the 1MDB Malaysian wealth fund. Singapore’s Attorney General has also referred 11 other BSI staff, including senior management, to the public prosecutor to evaluate whether they have broken the country’s laws.
In a statement of Monday, the Attorney General’s office said Yak Yew Chee and Yvonne Seah Yew are each facing seven charges for failing to disclose suspicious transactions to the financial authorities. Another BSI banker, Yeo Jiawei already faces 11 charges in connection to the 1MDB scandal………………………………….Full Article: Source

Will Sovereign Wealth Capital Save Deutsche Bank?

Posted on 11 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Under intense fire for its last-twelve-month stock underperformance, Deutsche Bank AG is endlessly trying to placate shareholder concerns. The German titan has been in discussions with its peers on a potential share sale - some estimates point to a €5 billion capital raise. The success and stability of Deutsche Bank are of tremendous concern for the financial health of Europe.
The German lender was named as “the most important net contributor to systemic risks,” according to an International Monetary Fund (IMF) report from June 2016. The global report implies that Deutsche Bank is a threat to the global financial system. Why? Deutsche Bank has a gigantic derivatives portfolio of a notional value of €41.94 trillion, according to Deutsche Bank’s 2015 annual report………………………………….Full Article: Source

Sovereign wealth funds pull $90bn from asset managers

Posted on 10 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

State-backed investment vehicles grapple with low commodity prices and disappointing returns. Sovereign wealth funds have pulled almost $90bn from asset managers over the past two years, as state-backed investment vehicles grapple with low commodity prices and disappointing returns.
The outflows mark the longest sustained period of redemptions, adding pressure to asset managers already smarting from a low-yield environment and volatile markets…………………………………….Full Article: Source

UAE’s sovereign funds at $1.25 trln

Posted on 10 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA) ranked the third largest sovereign wealth fund with total assets valued at AED 2.9 trillion (AED 792 billion), according to a report by the Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute (SWFI) in September.
Investment Corporation of Dubai (ICD) ranked second with total assets of AED 719 billion ($196 billion), accounting for 17% of the UAE’s four sovereign funds with assets amounting to $ 1.25 trillion. Total assets of Abu Dhabi Investment Council (ADIC) reached AED 403.7 billion ($110 billion), while the assets of International Petroleum Investment Company (IPIC) stood at AED 243 billion ($66.3 billion)…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Norway’s $890bn oil fund returns 4% in Q3

Posted on 10 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The world’s biggest sovereign wealth fund returned to growth in the third quarter as Norway’s $890bn oil fund reported a return of 4 per cent. Norway’s sovereign wealth fund books $30 bln profit in third quarterEquities returned 6 per cent, bonds 0.9 per cent, and property 2.4 per cent in the quarter.
Norway’s government is taking more money out of the fund than it is putting in for the first time in history. In the third quarter, NKr30bn was withdrawn, leaving the fund with a market value of NKr7.1tn…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Norway’s sovereign wealth fund books $30 bln profit in third quarter

Posted on 10 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s $882-billion sovereign wealth fund, the world’s biggest, returned a profit in the third quarter thanks to strong stock markets, it said on Friday. The fund earned a return of 4.0 percent in the quarter, or 240 billion Norwegian crowns ($29.7 billion), beating its benchmark by 0.2 percentage points. In the second quarter the fund booked a profit of 1.3 percent.
“Equity investments performed strongest during the quarter with positive returns in all regions. This was the main contributor to the fund’s results,” the fund’s deputy chief executive, Trond Grande, said in a statement…………………………………….Full Article: Source

$67 billion Libyan Investment Authority sees Malta platform as ‘vital to its credibility’

Posted on 10 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Libyan Investment Authority, which holds some $67 billion in assets, sees its platform in Malta as vital to its credibility. The president of the Interim Steering Committee of the Libyan Investment Authority (LIA), Ali Hassan Mahmoud, recently hosted its first unified meeting attended by the Steering Committee and the leadership of all LIA subsidiaries in Tunis.
Commenting at the meeting, Dr Ali said, “The EU regulation, accountability standards and governance that is offered by the Malta platform for the LIA is vital to our credibility with banks, investment partners and those companies in which the LIA invests…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Tapping Norway’s Oil Fund Raises Political Hackles

Posted on 07 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Low oil prices mean that this year the government for the first time is withdrawing more from the oil fund than it is putting in. Oil-rich Norway could be forming a bad habit.
The government said Thursday it would keep draining money from one vessel—the nation’s vast sovereign-wealth fund—to fill a shortage in another—-the annual budget. Beyond covering immediate spending needs, the government said it wished to support Norway’s economic recovery……………………………………Full Article: Source

Risks Mount for World’s Biggest Wealth Fund

Posted on 07 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Even Norway’s politicians are worried they might be taking too much money from their sovereign wealth fund. The government on Thursday revealed plans to withdraw 121 billion kroner ($15 billion) from the $890 billion fund next year as part of an oil-fed spending bonanza that’s filling a budget hole that’s almost 8 percent of gross domestic product.
As recently as 2015, Norway was using oil revenue to replenish its wealth fund. Now, it’s taking out more than half its estimated income from bonds, dividends and real estate to make up for lost oil revenue. Though the fund was created to help Norway cope with tougher times, the withdrawals have started much earlier than expected……………………………………Full Article: Source

Norway Raids More of Massive Wealth Fund to Support Recovery

Posted on 07 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway is ratcheting up withdrawals from its $890 billion sovereign wealth fund to support a recovery as it foresees a continued slump for the nation’s petroleum industry. The government is boosting oil wealth spending by 10 percent to 225.6 billion kroner ($28 billion) next year, according to the 2017 budget released in Oslo Thursday.
It will withdraw 121.2 billion kroner from its wealth fund, up from 95.7 billion kroner this year. Still, as the economy is now showing signs of recovering, the stimulus to the economy will fade to 0.4 percentage point from the 1.1 percentage point impulse unleashed this year……………………………………Full Article: Source

Norway govt to spend NOK 225 billion from wealth fund in 2017 -NRK

Posted on 07 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s rightwing government plans to raise its spending from the country’s sovereign wealth fund, the world’s largest, to 225 billion Norwegian crowns ($28.01 billion) in 2017, public broadcaster NRK reported on Thursday, citing anonymous sources.
In its revised 2016 budget in May, the government proposed 2016 oil revenue spending of 205.6 billion in the current year……………………………………Full Article: Source

Falcon Denies Sale Talks Amid 1MDB Probe

Posted on 07 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Swiss Falcon Private Bank, which has come under pressure for its involvement in the billion-dollar graft scandal surrounding Malaysian state fund 1MDB, said it isn’t for sale. The denial underscores the uncertainty hanging over the bank following a recent, abrupt change in management and a reported ban on accepting new money in Singapore.
Falcon is owned by Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth fund International Petroleum Investment Co (IPIC), whose former head Khadem al-Qubaisi is being investigated by Swiss officials on suspicion of fraud, money laundering and corruption in connection with 1MDB……………………………………Full Article: Source

Int’l Bank of Azerbaijan calls directions for use of $1 bn SOFAZ deposit

Posted on 07 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The State Oil Fund of Azerbaijan (SOFAZ) has become the main investor of the International Bank of Azerbaijan (IBA). IBA deputy chairman of board Elmir Gabibullayev says that SOFAZ opened a deposit for $1 bn at the Bank. “Those money will be used to cover the Bank’s liabilities abroad,” Gabibulayev said.
He added that currently the Bank is taking measures to optimize costs, and one such of such measures is a decision associated with activity of the International Insurance Company……………………………………Full Article: Source

Khazanah and other ACR shareholders agree to stake sale terms

Posted on 06 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Singapore reinsurer, ACR Capital Holdings Pte Ltd, on Wednesday announced that its major shareholders, including Khazanah Nasional Bhd, have agreed to the terms for the 100% acquisition of ACR by Shenzhen Qianhai Financial Holdings Co Ltd (QFH) and Shenzhen Investment Holdings Co Ltd (SIHC).
ACR did not disclose the purchase price but it was reported that the deal was worth S$1bil (RM3.03bil). Its other major shareholders are 3i Group plc (and affiliates), Temasek Holdings (Pte) Ltd and Marubeni Corp………………………………….Full Article: Source

NDFI Assets at $68bln

Posted on 04 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Iran’s sovereign wealth fund is becoming wealthier due to the oil producer’s increased sales, though low oil prices are slowing its growth. The National Development Fund of Iran currently has $68 billion in overseas assets, according to the chairman of its governing board.
The fund, which collects oil price windfalls for infrastructure investment, is yet dwarfed by sovereign wealth funds of its neighbors in the Persian Gulf periphery. The UAE has nearly $800 billion and Saudi Arabia has $600 billion in assets. “The fund’s overseas assets have remained unchanged since I took responsibility for the national development fund,” Mehr News Agency reported Ahmad Doust-Hosseini as saying…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Alaskans unhappy with amount of yearly dividend checks

Posted on 04 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Residents in Alaska have said they feel ‘cheated’ after their annual dividend payment was slashed by more than half to $1,022 per person. Each year, all locals receive the checks from the state’s oil wealth fund as a reward for living in Alaska for at least a full calendar year.
The Permanent Fund Dividend (PFD) reached a peak amount of $2,072 in 2015. But Governor Bill Walker stepped in and shrunk the amount because of the state’s multibillion-dollar budget deficit, a situation exacerbated by low oil prices…………………………………….Full Article: Source

Qatar debt issuance at $21.8bn since Sept 2015

Posted on 03 October 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The total fiscal deficit over the two years is forecast at $18bn, which the Ministry of Finance has stated will be funded entirely by debt issuance, as opposed to drawing down the substantial reserves at the Qatar Investment Authority (QIA).
Qatar still maintains the same ratings (AA, S&P and Fitch and Aa2, Moody’s) as it did in June 2014 when oil prices were in excess of $100 a barrel. Moody’s recently placed the sovereign on negative watch, whereas S&P has reaffirmed the stable outlook……………………………………..Full Article: Source

Drama aplenty as SMRT shareholders vote yes on Temasek buyout

Posted on 30 September 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

After nearly four hours in an extraordinary general meeting and scheme meeting which were chock-full of incidents — a technical glitch hitting the voting system, shareholders jeering and a disgruntled investor berating the chief executive — an overwhelming majority of SMRT shareholders supported the privatisation offer by parent firm Temasek Holdings on Thursday (Sept 29).
A total of 84.8 per cent of SMRT’s minority shareholders, or 3,747 of them, voted in favour of the buyout offer from Temasek. Only 670 shareholders voted against the bid. The thumbs-up came after 98.8 per cent voted to approve the assets sale to the Land Transport Authority (LTA) as part of the transition to the new rail financing framework (NRFF)………………………………………Full Article: Source

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