Mena News

 

  UAE consumer loans increase in June
Aug , 26 , 2013  
  Consumer lending in the UAE grew for the sixth consecutive month in June, led by increased spending through cards and higher sales at shopping malls. According to Central Bank statistics, personal loans to residents increased by AED3.8bn during the month.
 

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  Qatar’s economy to slow down 5% this year; says Merrill Lynch
Aug , 22 , 2013  
  Qatar’s economy is poised for a slowdown to 5% this year but will still top the other Gulf countries, the G5 and the global average, with inflation expected to “mildly harden”, according to the Bank of America Merrill Lynch. In its latest report, the bank, however, found a variegated growth pattern among the Gulf Co-operation Council (GCC) countries, whose hydrocarbon wealth fill up their national exchequers and reserves, Gulf Times stated. Qatar’s economy is expected to grow by 5% this year and 4.9% in 2014 compared to 6.1% in 2012. In 2011, the domestic economy had grown by a huge 17.4%. Qatar is projected to have the highest growth this year compared to the other GCC countries, the G5 (the US, the euro area, Japan, the UK and Canada) and the global average of 2.9% but below China (7.6%), Philippines (6.6%) and India (5.8%). BoAML said Qatar’s consumer price index (CPI) inflation is expected to rise to 2% this year and 2.5% in 2014 against 1.5% in the previous year. In 2011, it was 1.9%. This compares better with the global average of 2.9% and 3.3% in 2013 and 2014. The Gulf countries’ largest economy Saudi Arabia is expected to slowdown to 4.3% this year from 6.8% in the previous year but it is likely to witness higher growth of 4.9% in 2014. In 2011, the economy had expanded 8.5%. Saudi Arabia’s inflation is projected to slowly make an upward movement from 4.1% in 2012 to 4.4% this year and 4.5% in 2014. In 2011, inflation was at 4.9%. In the case of the UAE, its growth is expected to marginally slow down from 3.3% in 2012 to 3.2% this year after which to climb up to 3.3% in 2014. In 2011, the economy is estimated to have grown 4.9%. The CPI inflation is expected to rise from 1% in 2012 to 1.3% this year and further to 1.5% in 2014. In 2011, the UAE inflation was estimated at 0.9%. Kuwait is slated to witness a flat growth at 3% this year vis-à-vis 2012 and marginally improve to 3.1% in 2014. In 2011, its growth was 4.1%. Inflation is expected to harden from 3.5% in 2012 to 4% this year but to fall to 3.5% next year. In 2011, its Kuwait inflation was 4.8%. Oman’s economy is expected to remain flat at 3.3% from 2012 to 2014 while its growth was 4.2% in 2011. Inflation is forecasted to increase from 3% in 2012 to 3.5% this year but only to recede to 3% in 2014. In 2011, inflation in Oman was 4.1%. Bahrain is poised to make a steady gain with economy slated to grow from 2.2% in 2011, to 2.4% in 2012, 2.9% this year and further to 3.2% in 2014. Inflation is expected to remain unchanged at 2% from 2012 to 2014 after having witnessed deflation to the tune of 0.4% in 2011.
 

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  Dubai has $130 bln construction projects in FY12
Aug , 22 , 2013  
  Dubai has unveiled a raft of construction projects in the past year worth more than $130bn, Arabian Business reported. The announcements by major developers includes a growing pipeline of mega projects in what has been touted as a resurgence in the development sector. However, property analysts say the ambitious construction agenda, which is set to be rolled out over the next few years, needed to be viewed cautiously after the 2008-10 economic crisis resulted in Dubai property prices plummeting by up to 60 percent and many projects being cancelled. Amongst the biggest projects to emerge this year is the June launch of the 6.5 million square metre Dubai Creek Harbour, a joint venture between Emaar Properties, Dubai's largest listed developer, and conglomerate Dubai Holding. With business, shopping, sporting and entertainment facilities planned, the project reportedly has a budget of $17.4bn. Emaar also announced in June plans for the Dubai Hills Estate, which is part of the wider Mohammad Bin Rashid City project, after teaming up with government-backed Meraas Holding to add to its master-planned communities. In a busy year, it follows Emaar’s plans for The Address Residence Fountain Views and The Address Residence Sky View in Downtown Dubai, which were also unveiled this year. Meanwhile, Mohammad Bin Rashid City, which was unveiled by Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum in November and includes the world's biggest shopping mall, more than 100 hotels, a Universal Studios theme park and a public park larger than London’s Hyde Park, has an estimated $100bn of residential projects, according to Middle East Economic Digest. Dubai developer Meydan, which is developing the 4 million square metre first phase of the city with Sobha Group, estimated property receipts could be about $5.7bn. The first phase will feature 1,500 luxury villas, 7km of manmade lagoons and beaches, as well as retail, leisure and sports amenities. In other big-ticket projects, Dubai-based luxury developer Damac revealed plans for a $2.5bn, 28,000 sqft residential enclave, named Akoya by Damac, which will also feature an 18-hole Trump International Golf Club. This year, Damac also launched the $1bn Damac Towers with Hollywood film studio Paramount in Downtown Dubai. Meraas Holding, meanwhile, unveiled plans in February for the $1.6bn Bluewaters Island project off the coast of Jumeirah Beach Residence, including provision for the world’s tallest Ferris wheel.
 

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  Emaar’s bonds outperform regional peers on strong earnings
Aug , 22 , 2013  
  Emaar Properties’s Islamic bonds are outperforming regional peers after better-than estimated earnings helped the builder of the world’s tallest tower buck a global debt selloff, the Gulf Today reported. Yields on Emaar’s $500 million sukuk maturing August 2016 fell 16 basis points in the past month to 3.93 per cent at 4:28pm in Dubai, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. That compares with a 40 basis-point average gain to 4.65 per cent for yields on corporate sukuk in the Gulf Cooperation Council, according to the HSBC/Nasdaq Dubai GCC US Dollar Index. Dubai’s rebounding property market and some 38 million visitors to Dubai Mall, the world’s biggest by area, in the first half helped Emaar post a 10 per cent increase in second- quarter profit. The company’s shares have gained 8.2 per cent since it reported the results. Dubai’s economy is set to grow an average 4.6 per cent between 2012 and 2015, more than twice the rate in the prior four years, according to government forecasts. “Dubai is doing well, and Emaar is the premier property developer in the emirate,” Aliasgar Tambawala, manager of fixed income at Mashreq Capital DIFC, said. “The second-half results were very healthy, that spurred the stock and has flowed through to the bonds,” he added. Speculation the US Federal Reserve could begin reducing its bond purchasing programme as early as next month has pushed 10-year Treasury yields to the highest in more than two years this week and prompted a rise in sukuk yields. Average global corporate Islamic yields are up 150 basis points this year, to 4.57 per cent on Tuesday, according to HSBC/Nasdaq Dubai Indexes. “In the current situation of rates moving higher, across the board we are likely to see selling pressure and lower prices,” Fawaz Homoud, head of capital markets and structured solutions at Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank PJSC, said. “Any dip you see on Emaar is a buying opportunity. They took a big hit in June, but their rebound was phenomenal, given rates.” Emaar’s 2016 yields have tumbled 146 basis points since an 11-month high on June 26 as a debt rout caused US Treasury yields to rise 29 basis points, or 0.29 per centage point, in the period.
 

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  Gold settles lower on tapering clues from FOMC meeting minutes
Aug , 22 , 2013  
  Gold prices ended lower after the release of the FOMC meeting minutes, which revealed that the Fed Reserve is ready to start tapering its bond-buying program later this year. Spot Gold prices fell 0.4% to USD1,366 an ounce on the NYMEX.
 

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  Money supply growth slows down in Switzerland
Aug , 22 , 2013  
  Money supply growth in Switzerland eased in July, with M3 increasing 10.8% YoY, after posting 11.3% YoY growth in June. Similarly, M2 grew 11.3% YoY, less than the 12.1% YoY increase recorded in June.
 

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  US existing home sales rise to a fresh high
Aug , 22 , 2013  
  Existing home sales in the US increased 6.5% to an annual rate of 5.39mn (seasonally adjusted) in July from 5.06mn (revised) in June. The market forecasted existing home sales to rise to 5.15mn from 5.08mn originally reported for June.
 

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  Few clues on timing of QE3 reduction in U.S. Fed minute
Aug , 22 , 2013  
  A few Federal Reserve officials thought last month it would soon be time to slow the pace of their bond buying "somewhat" but others counseled patience, according to meeting minutes that offered little hint on when the U.S. central bank might reduce its support for the U.S. economy.
 

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  DEC and Deloitte Corporate Finance sign MoU
Aug , 22 , 2013  
  Dubai Economic Council (DEC) and Deloitte Corporate Finance entered into an MoU to enlighten the business community through the publication of reports and studies related to different sectors.
 

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  Increase in local and foreign investments for KAEC
Aug , 22 , 2013  
  King Abdullah Economic City (KAEC) in Rabigh is witnessing an increase in local and foreign investments for the construction of residential and industrial facilities. This can be ascribed to the agreements signed by KAEC with more than 50 local and international companies.
 

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