Economics Editor, Europe, Middle East and Africa
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Jul 2, 2015

Egypt slides on security fears; Gulf mixed

DUBAI, July 2 (Reuters) – Egyptian stocks fell on Thursday
because of security worries after bloody clashes with militants
in Sinai. Gulf markets were mixed as the Greek debt crisis and
soft oil prices were offset by the bargain hunting of local
retail investors on dips.

Reopening after a two-day holiday, Egypt’s share market
dropped 0.7 percent to 8,315 points. It has been
falling for a month, heading for a test of technical support at
its May low of 8,261 points.

Jul 2, 2015

Saudi economy accelerates in Q1, may not be sustained

DUBAI, July 2 (Reuters) – Saudi Arabia’s economy accelerated
in the first quarter of 2015, showing the world’s top oil
exporter can cope with low energy prices, but growth may slow as
the government faces pressure to rein in spending.

Gross domestic product, adjusted for inflation, grew 2.4
percent from a year earlier in the first quarter, against a
revised 1.6 percent in the fourth quarter of 2014, the state
statistics department said on Thursday.

Jul 1, 2015

Gulf mixed; Abu Dhabi’s TAQA up on merger hope

DUBAI, July 1 (Reuters) – Gulf stock markets were mixed on
Wednesday as retail investors bought shares on dips but concern
about the Greek debt crisis and weak oil prices prevented any
major gains. Abu Dhabi National Energy Co
surged on merger hopes.

The Saudi Arabian index fell in early trade but
closed 0.2 percent higher. Telecommunications operator Zain KSA
added 5.3 percent, while Atheeb Telecom rose
1.7 percent in unusually heavy trade.

Jun 30, 2015

Gulf markets rebound as oil rallies; Tunisia edges up

DUBAI, June 30 (Reuters) – Major Middle Eastern stock
markets rose on Tuesday after bargain-hunters came in at the
lows, encouraged by rebounds in overseas bourses and oil prices.

The Saudi stock index dropped as much as 1.5 percent
in early trade but then edged up for most of the day, closing
0.3 percent higher. Miner Ma’aden was one of the main
stocks to recover, ending up 1.6 percent.

Jun 30, 2015

Abu Dhabi finance zone gears up to open with draft rules

DUBAI, June 30 (Reuters) – Abu Dhabi’s new financial free
zone, which aims to become a top banking centre for the region,
took a step towards opening for business by issuing draft laws
covering fund management, market operations, information
disclosure and enforcement of its rules.

The drafts will be available for public comment over a
six-week period, and the zone plans to accept its first
applications for financial service operating licences by the end
of this year, Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM) said on Tuesday.

Jun 29, 2015

Tunisia attack to sap reserves but economy can avoid crisis

DUBAI (Reuters) – An assault on a Tunisian resort, which killed 39 people, has sent holidaymakers fleeing and dealt a major blow to the country’s tourism industry, but the broader economy should be robust enough to withstand the shock.

European tour operators are evacuating thousands of tourists after Friday’s attack by a lone militant on a beach in Sousse and many foreigners are likely to shun Tunisia in the months ahead until they feel it is safe to return.

Jun 29, 2015

Markets fall again on Greece; no panic in Tunisia

DUBAI, June 29 (Reuters) – The Greek debt crisis continued
to push down Middle Eastern stock markets on Monday after Athens
imposed capital controls and shut banks, raising the prospect of
Greece leaving the euro zone.

Gulf economies are better insulated from such an event than
many areas of the world, because they do not depend on foreign
investment and governments can use huge fiscal reserves to
continue spending heavily.

Jun 28, 2015

Gulf share prices fall on attacks, Greece; IPO boosts Egypt

DUBAI, June 28 (Reuters) – Gulf share price indexes fell on
Sunday in reaction to the militant attacks in Kuwait and Tunisia
and the Greek debt crisis, while Egypt’s rose after an initial
public share offer by Emaar Misr was greatly
oversubscribed.

The attacks, which killed a total of 66 people, did not
appear to represent any immediate threat to the oil exporting
economies of the Gulf. The region does not rely on foreign
investment and has huge resources which it can devote to keeping
the oil flowing.

Jun 25, 2015

UAE drops as high-fliers pull back; Saudi edges up

DUBAI, June 25 (Reuters) – United Arab Emirates stock
markets pulled back on Thursday as Etisalat and Amanat, which
had galvanised the bourses in recent days, lost steam. Saudi
Arabia edged up on retail investors’ buying of second-tier
stocks.

Etisalat had surged 5.1 percent on Wednesday and
rocketed to its 15 percent daily limit on Tuesday after
announcing plans to let institutional investors buy its shares.
But it fell 3.5 percent on Thursday, suggesting investors now
believed it was fully valued.

Jun 24, 2015

Etisalat lifts Abu Dhabi again; Amanat leaps in Dubai

DUBAI, June 24 (Reuters) – Abu Dhabi’s stock market
outperformed the region again on Wednesday due to
telecommunications firm Etisalat, which surged after saying it
would open its shares to foreign investors. Most other Gulf
markets were firm on the back of stronger oil prices.

Etisalat closed 5.1 percent higher at 14.50
dirhams, its highest finish since mid-2008, in its heaviest
trading volume since February 2014.

    • About Andrew

      "Based in London, I manage economics and emerging markets coverage in the EMEA region and reporting on emerging markets in the area. Before moving to EMEA in early 2009 I spent almost 20 years in Asia as a journalist, based in Hong Kong, Taipei, Tokyo, Singapore and Shanghai."
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