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IMDB scandal-linked company closed down

Posted on 11 April 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A tax haven company linked to a $450 million takeover bid involving central players in Malaysia’s 1MDB scandal has been quietly shut down, documents show. The Seychelles-registered company, PetroSaudi International (PSI), was used by Saudi businessman Tarek Obaid to buy Malaysian investment banking conglomerate UBG from its shareholders in 2010 in a transaction dubbed “Project Unicorn”.
One of the main beneficiaries of the deal was the Abu Dhabi-Kuwait-Malaysia Investment Corporation (ADKMIC), which owned more than half of UBG………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Azerbaijani banks buy $50M from State Oil Fund

Posted on 08 April 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The State Oil Fund of the Republic of Azerbaijan (SOFAZ) sold $50 million to 21 banks through the auction held by Azerbaijan’s Central Bank (CBA), SOFAZ said April 7. SOFAZ said that the banks bought the entire foreign currency amount put up for sale.
SOFAZ will continue selling foreign currency through auctions in 2016. The foreign currency is sold as part of SOFAZ’s transfers to the Azerbaijani state budget, which are envisaged to stand at 7.615 billion Azerbaijani manats in 2016………………………………………..Full Article: Source

World’s Biggest Wealth Fund Under Pressure to Exit Tax Havens

Posted on 06 April 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norwegian lawmakers are pushing for the country’s $850 billion sovereign wealth fund to drop all investments in companies that use tax havens as indignation over the practice swells.“Norway will have a serious problem in explaining how we can continue using the world’s biggest fund to legitimize robber states that are hiding corrupt money,” said Snorre Valen, a lawmaker for the Socialist Left, who urged other parties in parliament to back the initiative.
The fund has an estimated 200 billion kroner ($24 billion) in assets parked in tax havens, according to Valen………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Temasek Sees Valuation Concerns in Chinese Technology Industry

Posted on 06 April 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

There is valuation concern within China’s technology industry after investors piled into the sector in the last couple of years, said an executive of Temasek Holdings Pte, an investor in e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. before its 2014 initial public offering.
The Singapore state investment company is considering moving to earlier-stage investments in the industry as valuations get higher for companies that move closer to initial public offerings, said Wu Yibing, Temasek’s China head, at the Credit Suisse Asian Investment Conference in Hong Kong on Tuesday………………………………………..Full Article: Source

1MDB was unsustainable due to low capital, high debt: Abdul Wahid Omar

Posted on 05 April 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The financial structure of Malaysian state investment vehicle One Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) was unsustainable from the very start, according to a top government minister.
1MDB’s design was an exception, not the norm, for Malaysian government-linked companies, Abdul Wahid Omar, Economic Planning Minister of Malaysia, told CNBC’s”The Rundown” on Monday. Rather than being listed like other firms, 1MBD, which was set up in 2009, was wholly owned by the Ministry of Finance, he said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Finance Ministry: 1MDB has no overdue debts

Posted on 05 April 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) does not have any overdue debts, says the Finance Ministry. “1MDB has never failed to settle its debts, including payment of loan interest,” the Ministry said in a written reply to Mohamed Hanipa Maidin (PAS-Sepang) who wanted to know 1MDB’s outstanding debts and lenders.
On the amount of 1MDB debt guaranteed by the Government, the ministry said it amounted to RM5.8bil. On March 25, 1MDB said its subsidiary Edra Energy (Langat) Sdn Bhd, had fully repaid a RM700mil syndicated term loan facility to a consortium of domestic banks………………………………………..Full Article: Source

1MDB gets time extension to hold AGM, submit audited statements

Posted on 05 April 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) has been given an extension by the Companies Commission of Malaysia (CCM) till Sept 30, 2016 to hold its AGM and approve its audited financial statements for the financial year ended March 31, 2015.
It said in a statement that it was currently unable to prepare its financial statements for audit pending the return of the relevant financial documents seized during a raid on July 8, 2015. The initial deadline for 1MDB to submit its accounts had been Sept 30, 2015, but the CCM gave it an extension to March 31, 2016………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Nigeria’s sovereign wealth fund assets grew by 20pct to $1.07 bln in 2015 - SIA

Posted on 04 April 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Total assets of Nigeria’s sovereign wealth fund grew to 213.67 billion naira ($1.07 billion) in 2015, up by 20 percent compared with the previous year, its managing director said on Friday. Nigeria, Africa’s biggest oil producer, established the Sovereign Investment Authority (SIA) in 2011 with $1 billion of seed capital in an effort to manage oil export revenues.
President Muhammadu Buhari took office last May and has prioritised cracking down on corruption and mismanagement, particularly in the oil sector, which has deepened an economic crisis exacerbated by falling crude prices………………………………………..Full Article: Source

SWF: State govts to get dividends in 2018

Posted on 04 April 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

State governments will have to wait till 2018 and pray that the three funds of the Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF) make consistent profits before they can start receiving dividends on their Sovereign Wealth Investment (SWI).
National Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA) Managing Director of the Authority, Uche Orji said: “the law says after five years of profitability in each of the three funds, that is when the state governments will start getting dividends. “If things continue like this in the next two years our anticipation is that we will start paying dividends to the states by the end the of 2017 to 2018.’’……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Why There’s Less To Saudi Arabia’s New $2 Trillion Wealth Fund Than Meets The Eye

Posted on 04 April 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Saudi Arabia’s Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (known to most people in the kingdom as MBS) has renewed his push to reform the Saudi economy, by announcing plans to create a $2 trillion sovereign wealth fund and part-privatize the national oil company Saudi Aramco within two years.
In an interview with Bloomberg, MBS also said Saudi Arabia will not freeze crude oil production unless other countries do so. Extensive interviews are a relatively rare phenomenon for Saudi leaders, so such public pronouncements are useful indicators of what the authorities in Riyadh are thinking………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Investigators believe money to finance ‘The Wolf of Wall Street’ came from a Malaysian state fund

Posted on 04 April 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

It took years for Leonardo DiCaprio and Marin Scorsese to make “The Wolf of Wall Street,” the 2013 adaptation of the book by former stock broker Jordan Belfort that highlighted his debauched exploits and the illegal actions that led to him going to prison for fraud.
Global investigators believe much of the movie’s $100 million budget was diverted from a Malaysian state fund that was established to spur local economic development. Investigators in two countries believe that 1Malaysia Development Bhd., or 1MDB, which was set up seven years ago by the prime minister of Malaysia, Najib Razak, moved $155 million into Red Granite Pictures, one of the production companies behind “The Wolf of Wall Street.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Singapore’s GIC gets P217-M tax refund

Posted on 04 April 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Court of Tax Appeals (CTA) has granted a P216.9-million tax refund on the interest income earned on Treasury bond (T-bond) investments made by Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund in 2012. In a 23-page decision dated March 17, the CTA First Division said GIC Pte. Ltd., owned and controlled by the Singapore government, is entitled to a tax exemption under the National Internal Revenue Code (NIRC).
Monetary benefits from interest income on T-bonds are subject to a 20% final withholding tax to be remitted by the Bureau of the Treasury to the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR)………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Would Australia’s Future Fund really provide cheap finance to Carmichael coal?

Posted on 31 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Could Australia’s sovereign wealth fund be the key source of finance that enables Adani’s Carmichael mega coal mine in the Galilee Basin? News has emerged that India’s Finance Minister, Arun Jaitley, will meet with Finance Minister Mathias Cormann and Chairman of the Future Fund, Peter Costello, on an Australian visit aimed at trying to secure subsidised government funding for Adani’s proposed coal mega-mine.
Having utterly failed to attract finance from the commercial banking sector for the initial A$10 billion required for the mine, rail and port project, Adani is now looking to its friends in the Indian and Australian government for a little sugar. ……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Local banks buy over $28mln from SOFAZ

Posted on 31 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The State Oil Fund of the Republic of Azerbaijan (SOFAZ) sold $28.35 million to five local banks through the auction held by Azerbaijan’s Central Bank (CBA) March 30, SOFAZ said March 30. SOFAZ offered $100 million for sale through the auction, and will continue selling foreign currency through auctions in 2016.
The foreign currency is sold as part of SOFAZ’s transfers to the Azerbaijani state budget, which are envisaged to stand at 7.615 billion Azerbaijani manats in 2016. SOFAZ was established in 1999 with assets of $271 million………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Dexus Adds Cash Distribution to Sweeten Investa Office Fund Deal

Posted on 30 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Dexus Property Group has sweetened its offer for Investa Office Fund, which said it wasn’t aware of a competing bid from a consortium that’s speculated to include Blackstone Group and China Investment Corp.
Dexus added a cash distribution of 7 Australian cents to its existing offer, taking the total to A$4.24 a unit or A$2.6 billion ($2 billion), Investa Office Fund said in a statement to the stock exchange Wednesday. Dexus cited a A$19 million drop in transaction costs largely due to reduced financing costs for the special distribution………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Local banks buy $0.5M from SOFAZ

Posted on 29 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Azerbaijan’s state oil fund SOFAZ sold $0.5 million to three local banks through the auction held by Azerbaijan’s Central Bank (CBA) March 28, SOFAZ reported on March 28. SOFAZ offered $100 million for sale through the auction, and will continue selling foreign currency through auctions in 2016.
The foreign currency is sold as part of SOFAZ’s transfers to the Azerbaijani state budget, which are envisaged to stand at 7.615 billion Azerbaijani manats in 2016. SOFAZ was established in 1999 with assets of $271 million………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Fiscal surplus of $3.45b, thanks to Temasek’s inclusion in NIR

Posted on 29 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

From a $4.88 billion deficit last year to back in the black this year. An overall surplus of $3.45 billion is projected for 2016, buoyed by bigger contributions from Singapore investment company Temasek Holdings.
What is more, the surplus is forecast even as spending rises, including a marked increase in healthcare and business support. Helping offset the rising expenditure is Temasek’s inclusion in the net investment returns (NIR) framework this year. This will push the NIR contribution to the nation’s coffers to $14.7 billion, up 48.6 per cent from $9.9 billion last year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Singapore’s GIC sovereign fund expects low US stock returns

Posted on 24 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

GIC expects below-average returns from U.S. stocks over the next five to 10 years, but the Singapore sovereign wealth fund still sees the U.S. as an important source of investment opportunities.
“The greatest strength of the U.S. is the private sector. If that continues to be the case, we are not concerned,” said Lim Chow Kiat, GIC Private Ltd’s chief investment officer. “We find a lot of investment opportunities in the U.S.,” he said. “A lot of exciting things are coming out of the private sector on a daily basis.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Temasek-linked group taking Select private with S$0.525 a share offer

Posted on 24 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Catalist-listed food caterer Select Group is being taken private by a consortium led by Temasek Holdings-linked Dymon Asia Private Equity. The consortium also includes Select’s co-founders Tan Chor Khoon and Tan Choh Peng, who are brothers.
The offer price is S$0.525 a share, a 23.5 per cent premium over the last transacted price on March 18. Shareholders holding approximately 53.6 per cent of the total issued shares have undertaken to accept the offer………………………………………..Full Article: Source

SOFAZ reveals revenues from ACG field

Posted on 24 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Revenues of Azerbaijan’s State Oil Fund (SOFAZ) from the development project of Azeri-Chirag-Guneshli (ACG) block of oil and gas fields totaled $117.799 billion from early 2001 to March 1, 2016, SOFAZ told Trend.
“The Fund’s revenues from the project totaled $790 million in Jan.-Feb. 2016, some $442 million of which accounted for January,” said SOFAZ. A contract for development of ACG block of fields was signed in 1994. The proven oil reserve of the block nears one billion tons………………………………………..Full Article: Source

UOB-Temasek fund lends to Thai, Malaysian startups

Posted on 23 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

United Overseas Bank, Singapore’s third-largest bank, and Singaporean sovereign wealth fund Temasek Holdings have signed two financing agreements with Southeast Asian startups through their joint venture. InnoVen Capital signed venture debt financing deals totaling $5 million with Malaysia-based KFit Holdings, an e-commerce health and fitness company and Thailand-based Pomelo Fashion.
Last year, UOB and Temasek Holdings signed a deal to provide venture debt financing of $500 million for startups in China, India and Southeast Asia. So far, they have each committed up to $100 million in paid-up capital to InnoVen to help finance Asian venture companies………………………………………..Full Article: Source

SOFAZ reveals revenues from largest oil project

Posted on 23 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Revenues of Azerbaijan’s State Oil Fund (SOFAZ) from the development project of Azeri-Chirag-Guneshli (ACG) block of oil and gas fields totaled $117.799 billion from early 2001 to March 1, 2016, SOFAZ told Trend.
“The Fund’s revenues from the project totaled $790 million in Jan.-Feb. 2016, some $442 million of which accounted for January,” said SOFAZ. A contract for development of ACG block of fields was signed in 1994. The proven oil reserve of the block nears one billion tons………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Qatar Doubles Down on Volkswagen

Posted on 22 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Qatar Holdings, a branch of Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund and a major investor in Volkswagen, plans to intervene more heavily in the carmaker’s strategy in the wake of the Dieselgate emissions-rigging scandal, Handelsblatt has learned.
According to sources, Qatar, which is VW’s third-largest investor, fears that the works council and the state of Lower Saxony, the latter of which has a 20 percent vote on the company’s board, will prevent real restructuring in the aftermath of the scandal. Chief executive Matthias Müller plans to present a comprehensive new strategy by the summer: it is expected to propose substantial cuts, including job losses and plant closures………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Author doubts accuracy of Qatar Investment Authority’s reported loss of $12 billion in third quarter of 2015

Posted on 22 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Financial Times reported a few months ago that the Qatar sovereign wealth fund, the Qatar Investment Authority (QIA), had suffered a $12 billion paper loss in the third quarter of 2015. Unconvinced of the veracity of this report, Chris Wright, financial columnist and the author of “No More Worlds to Conquer,” told Gulf News Journal why it’s unlikely that QIA might have had a loss of that magnitude during that period.
“The problem is that the QIA doesn’t disclose its holdings, so we don’t know how other assets in the portfolio performed,” Chris Wright told Gulf News Journal. “Their real estate holdings probably did a lot better over the same period. On top of that, those are clearly not realized losses. Volkswagen fell heavily in that quarter, but it had gone up for several years beforehand. In the end, sovereign wealth funds don’t care about quarterly performance. They are set up for generations ahead.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Norway taps rainy day fund, will Texas?

Posted on 17 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s conservative government has tapped the Scandinavian nation’s $819 billion sovereign wealth fund for the first time since it’s creation 20 years ago, citing lower tax revenues and an economy struggling with low oil prices.
Norway started pouring oil revenues into a rainy day fund in 1996 as a way to cushion the blow when the nation’s oil runs out. The account is now the largest sovereign wealth fund in the world, even after the government pulled $781 million out in January………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Reality Bites For OPEC’s Sovereign Wealth Funds

Posted on 17 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Reality has begun to bite as low oil prices have continued to take their toll. Thus far, OPEC’s sovereign producers have tried to stay afloat by cutting spending, running down reserves and increasing borrowing efforts. These efforts are most important for the ‘fragile five’.
Total sovereign wealth fund AUM has largely flat lined as the fall in oil prices has curtailed increases. With the prolonged nature of the current price environment, the potential call on these funds to cover fiscal deficits could be as much as US$200 billion………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Bank Debt Getting Uglier for This $9 Billion Nordic Fund Manager

Posted on 16 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s Folketrygdfondet , which is the domestic counterpart of Norway’s $830 billion sovereign wealth fund, invests mostly in Norwegian and other Nordic assets, with 40 percent of its total portfolio destined for fixed income and the rest in stocks. The fund is due to report annual results on Wednesday, when it will reveal details of shifts in its investments.
In Norway, banks have issued more so-called additional Tier 1 notes than anywhere else, relying increasingly on a debt instrument that has only existed since 2013 and that forces investors to absorb losses if bank capital levels drop below pre-set thresholds. AT1s are also popular in Denmark and Sweden………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Asciano backs US$6.8b takeover

Posted on 16 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Astralian logistics giant Asciano said it was recommending a US$6.8 billion takeover deal between two rival local and international suitors, breaking up the company’s ports and rail assets. Yesterday’s announcement ended a bidding war for Asciano between a consortium led by Canada’s Brookfield Infrastructure Group and a group led by Australia’s Qube that includes a Chinese sovereign wealth fund.
Qube will split the ports business with Brookfield, whose consortium members include government wealth fund the Qatar Investment Authority. Another grouping, which includes China’s CIC Capital Corp, Singapore’s state investment fund GIC, the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, investment group Global Infrastructure Partners, and the British Columbia Investment Management Corp, will acquire the rail operations………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Qatar-backed consortium completes $6.8bn takeover of Australian freight giant Asciano

Posted on 16 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Australia’s Asciano Ltd on Tuesday agreed to a A$9.1 billion ($6.8 billion) buyout by two global consortia after a seven-month bidding war for the port and rail giant, although doubts persist over anti-trust and foreign ownership issues.
In its third takeover endorsement in nine months, Australia’s largest ports and rail operator said it now supported a joint bid from local rival Qube Holdings Ltd, Canada’s Brookfield Asset Management Inc and a host of backers from China to Qatar………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Azerbaijani banks buy nearly $12M from State Oil Fund

Posted on 15 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The State Oil Fund of the Republic of Azerbaijan (SOFAZ) sold $11.9 million to nine local banks through the auction held by Azerbaijan’s Central Bank (CBA) March 14, SOFAZ said March 14.
SOFAZ offered $150 million for sale through the auction. Thus, SOFAZ will continue selling foreign currency through auctions in 2016. The foreign currency is sold as part of SOFAZ’s transfers to the Azerbaijani state budget, which are envisaged to stand at 7.615 billion Azerbaijani manats in 2016………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Azerbaijan’s Oil Fund sold $11.9 million through Central Bank’s foreign exchange auction

Posted on 15 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The State Oil Fund of Azerbaijan (SOFAZ) has appeared today on the foreign exchange auction of the Central Bank as a seller. According to SOFAZ, today it has applied for sale of $150 million and sold $11.9 million through the auction.
“Nine banks were among the buyers,” SOFAZ said. At the previous auction on 11 March the Fund sold $68.4 million to 25 banks through auction. SOFAZ promises to continue selling currency through the CBA auctions………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Putin’s $50 Billion Oil Cache Gives Russia Luxury to Ignore ECB

Posted on 15 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Russian central bankers have fewer reasons to offer relief to their recession-wracked economy than you might think. Their decision whether to resume an interest rate-cutting cycle this week is almost beside the point as the government of Vladimir Putin lubricates the economy in the background with oil wealth amassed in better times.
The Finance Ministry transferred 2.6 trillion rubles ($37 billion) of accumulated oil riches from the $50 billion rainy-day sovereign wealth fund into the economy last year to cover a fiscal gap. It’s budgeting another 2 trillion-ruble drawdown from the Reserve Fund in 2016………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Angola Cuts 2016 Spending by 20%

Posted on 15 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Angola, facing economic and political pressures, has cut spending under its 2016 budget by 20% and is reassuring international investors it can cope with persistently low oil prices, Finance Minister Armando Manuel said Monday.
Manuel declined to comment on speculation that Mr. dos Santos could push for his son, José Filomeno de Sousa dos Santos, the head of Angola’s sovereign-wealth fund, or his daughter, business magnate Isabel dos Santos, to take over………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Sovereign wealth funds managed assets worth a record $7.1 trillion in 2014

Posted on 14 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Sovereign wealth funds (SWFs) have increased and consolidated their investment flows. Worldwide, there are currently 92 active SWFs (eight more than last year) and the assets under their management are worth a total of $7.1 trillion (up from $5.9 trillion last year).
Meanwhile, a further 25 countries are considering the possibility of creating a SWF. The greatest investment capacity is concentrated in four areas - Norway, Southeast Asia, the Gulf Cooperation Council countries, and China - but Africa and Latin America are also emerging as important SWF regions. These are just a few of the highlights of the 4th Sovereign Wealth Fund Report, written by ESADE, KPMG Spain, and ICEX-Invest in Spain. The report analyses the behaviour and major trends of SWFs over the course of 2014 and early 2015………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway’s massive sovereign wealth fund posts weak gains

Posted on 10 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The world’s largest sovereign wealth fund gained 2.7 percent on its investments last year, the weakest return in four years. The fund has divested from environmentally destructive companies.
Norway’s sovereign wealth fund ended last year with assets of 796 billion euros ($874 billion) despite the global market turmoil, the Nordic country’s central bank said on Wednesday. The fund gained 35 billion euros ($39 billion), the lowest return since 2011………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norwegian state pension fund steers through volatile year

Posted on 10 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Despite a volatile year in international markets, the Norwegian state pension fund reported a return of 2.7 per cent in 2015, the Nordic country‘s central bank said Wednesday. The return on the sovereign wealth fund, one of the world‘s largest, was equivalent to a rise of 334 billion kroner (39 billion dollars). The return in 2014 was 7.6 per cent.
“2015 was a volatile year, with negative interest rates, currency turmoil, falling oil prices and weaker growth expectations for emerging markets” said Yngve Slyngstad, head of Norges Bank Investment Management………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Weakest return for Norway sovereign wealth fund since 2011

Posted on 10 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The world’s biggest sovereign wealth fund, Norway’s public pension fund, said Wednesday it posted a 2.7-percent return in 2015 owing to real estate and the global stock market recovery.
It was however the fund’s weakest performance since 2011. Investments posted returns of 334 billion kroner (35.6 billion euros, $39 billion at current exchange rates) last year, boosting the fund’s value to 7,475 billion kroner (796 billion euros, $874 billion) as of the end of December………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway’s oil fund says it can easily cope with Oslo withdrawal

Posted on 10 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s $830bn oil fund can easily cope with the government in Oslo withdrawing the first money from the country’s rainy-day pot and does not face pressure to sell assets, according to its chief executive. The centre-right government took NKr6.7bn ($800m) out of the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund in January, many years ahead of the first predicted withdrawals.
However Yngve Slyngstad, chief executive of Norges Bank Investment Management, the fund’s manager, said it could cover the withdrawals through the cash flow it received from dividends and bond coupon payments, which last year totalled NKr191.5bn………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway’s $830 billion wealth fund: Brexit not a significant risk

Posted on 10 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s $830 billion sovereign wealth fund does not see the prospect of Britain leaving the EU as a significant risk to its investments, its chief executive told Reuters on Wednesday.
“We will continue to be a significant investor in the UK at about the same level as we are today and probably even increasing our investments there going forward no matter what happens,” Yngve Slyngstad said in an interview. “All changes entail some risk but we would not categorize it as a significant risk.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Norway sovereign fund sells Japanese government bonds

Posted on 10 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s government pension fund became a seller of Japanese government bonds in the October-December quarter after having built up its holdings until September, a report by the country’s central bank shows.
According to Norges Bank, the fund’s outstanding JGB holdings shrank 13%, or by around 430 billion yen ($3.81 billion), from the end of September to 2.76 trillion yen as of the end of last year. JGBs had accounted for 7.5% of the fund’s bondholdings at the end of September, but the selling pushed the figure down to 6.5%. Proceeds from the JGB sales were reinvested in European and emerging-country bonds………………………………………..Full Article: Source

SOFAZ sells $50 million to 24 banks

Posted on 10 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The State Oil Fund of Azerbaijan (SOFAZ) has taken part in today’s foreign exchange auction of the Central Bank as a seller. SOFAZ said it has sold $50 million through the auction today. “24 banks were among the buyers,” the Fund said.
At the previous auction on 7 March SOFAZ sold $49.7 million to 29 banks through auction. The Fund promises to continue selling foreign currency through the CBA auctions………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Azerbaijani banks buy $50M from State Oil Fund

Posted on 08 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The State Oil Fund of the Republic of Azerbaijan (SOFAZ) sold $49.7 million to 28 local banks through the auction held by Azerbaijan’s Central Bank (CBA) March 7, SOFAZ said March 7. SOFAZ offered $50 million for sale through the auction.
Thus, SOFAZ will continue selling foreign currency through auctions in 2016. The foreign currency is sold as part of SOFAZ’s transfers to the Azerbaijani state budget, which are envisaged to stand at 7.615 billion Azerbaijani manats in 2016. SOFAZ was established in 1999 with assets of $271 million………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Kingdom’s credit profile ‘fundamentally solid’

Posted on 08 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Saudi Arabian Monetary Agency’s (SAMA) foreign exchange reserves are estimate to reach $500 billion (SR1,874 billion) by the end of 2016, compared to $598 (SR2,241 billion) in January 2016, according to Jadwa Investment.
“This is consistent with our view that the Kingdom will run a budget deficit of SR402 billion, a current account deficit of $72 billion, and total new debt issuance of SR120 billion,” Jadwa’s economic research team said in its latest Monetary and Financial Update………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway’s massive wealth fund had historically bad month

Posted on 08 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway said on Friday it had, for the first time, drawn out more cash from its huge sovereign wealth fund in January than it paid in, as the oil-rich nation grapples with plummeting crude prices.” State oil revenues have fallen considerably, and for the first time in a long time have become less than the national budget deficit,” state secretary for finance Paal Bjornestad said in an email to AFP.
The government withdrew in January a net 6.7 billion kroner (€713 million, $780 million) from the fund — much more than the 4.9 billion kroner forecast last year by the right-wing government for the whole of 2016………………………………………..Full Article: Source

OSA label to be lifted from 1MDB audit report

Posted on 08 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Public Accounts Committee said the final audit report on 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) will no longer be classified as an official secret after being tabled in Parliament. In a statement on Monday, PAC chairman Hasan Arifin said the report will remain under the Official Secrets Act only until it is tabled in Parliament.
“The final audit report on the fund management of 1MDB will no longer remain under the Act. “The decision to classify the final audit report under OSA was made by Auditor-General Tan Sri Ambrin Buang, who is responsible to ensure the credibility of the National Audit Department………………………………………..Full Article: Source

1MDB audit report ‘secret’ until tabled in Parliament

Posted on 08 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The report on the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) probe is classified an official secret by Auditor-General Ambrin Buang, and not by Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee. This clarification was made by PAC’s chief Hasan Arifin.
He said contrary to popular belief, the final audit report on 1MDB was classified under the Official Secrets Act (OSA) 1972 — until the PAC report on the struggling state investment firm’s alleged mismanagement was tabled in Parliament. “This differs from the annual Auditor-General’s Report , which is first tabled in Parliament, making it a public document. This is the usual practice after which the report will then be presented to the PAC by the Auditor-General………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway dips into sovereign wealth fund to counter oil rout

Posted on 07 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway said Friday it had, for the first time, drawn out more cash from its huge sovereign wealth fund in January than it paid in, as the oil-rich nation grapples with plummeting crude prices. “State oil revenues have fallen considerably, and for the first time in a long time have become less than the national budget deficit,” state secretary for finance Paal Bjornestad said in an email to AFP.
The government withdrew in January a net 6.7 billion kroner (713 million euros, $780 million) from the fund — much more than the 4.9 billion kroner forecast last year by the right-wing government for the whole of 2016. The fund was as of early Friday stocked with a total 7.0 trillion kroner………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway says made first withdrawal from oil fund in January

Posted on 04 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

With its economy weakening, Norway’s government made its first withdrawal from the country’s $826 billion sovereign wealth fund in January, 20 years after first depositing cash from its vast oil sector into the account, the finance ministry said.
The finance ministry did not confirm details of the withdrawal, but newspaper Dagens Naeringsliv said 6.7 billion Norwegian crowns ($780 million) had been extracted to pay for public spending. The government, led by Prime Minister Erna Solberg of the Conservatives and Finance Minister Siv Jensen of the smaller Progress Party, had flagged in its October budget that it might make the first withdrawal from the rainy-day fund this year………………………………………..Full Article: Source

SOFAZ reveals revenues, expenditures in 2015

Posted on 03 March 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 revealed its revenues and expenditures for the period of January-December 2015.
The Fund reported on March 1 that during the reported period, its budget revenues exceeded 7.721 billion manats ($4.898 billion), while budget expenditures constituted 9.188 billion manats ($5.829 billion)………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Azerbaijani banks buy $100mln from State Oil Fund

Posted on 03 March 2016 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The State Oil Fund of the Republic of Azerbaijan (SOFAZ) sold $100 million to 23 local banks through the auction held by Azerbaijan’s Central Bank (CBA) March 2, SOFAZ said. “SOFAZ offered $100 million for sale through the auction,” the statement said. “This amount was fully sold to the banks.”
Thus, SOFAZ will continue selling foreign currency through auctions in 2016. The foreign currency is sold as part of SOFAZ’s transfers to the Azerbaijani state budget, which are envisaged to stand at six billion Azerbaijani manats in 2016………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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