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Abu Dhabi: Evolving insurance market

ABU DHABI: Regulations enforcing higher capital standards in the UAE’s overcrowded insurance market have reduced the amount of insurance brokers, while slower growth in commercial business means the sector is looking to opportunities in the retail segment. “The number of brokers has decreased by 20 percent compared with 2008,” the Insurance Authority said recently. Put …


HSBC upgrades Egypt’s Olympic Group

HSBC upgraded Olympic Group to "overweight" from "neutral," citing an attractive valuation, and said the Egyptian appliance maker’s capacity expansion plans are on track. Capacity expansions related to Olympic’s agreement with Sweden’s Electrolux and potential original equipment manufacturers’ sales are progressing as planned, HSBC said. Olympic Group, which specializes in making automatic washing machines, refrigerators, …


Egypt sells 350,000T; JPMorgan key buyer

State-owned Egyptian General Petroleum Corp (EGPC) sold 350,000 tons of naphtha for September-December loading from Suez, with JPMorgan sweeping up 60 percent of the volumes, traders said on Thursday. JPMorgan will be lifting six cargoes, each at 35,000 tons, at premiums of $2.00-$5.00 a ton to Middle East quotes, on a free-on-board (FOB) basis. Glencore …


Egypt PPI rises 10.36 pct in year to July

Egypt’s producer price index rose 10.36 percent in the 12 months to July, figures on the website of the state statistics agency CAPMAS showed on Friday. The government started the new index in October 2007, replacing the old wholesale price index. The July figure is preliminary.    


ASCOM says found gold targets in Ethiopia

Egypt’s ASEC Company for Mining (ASCOM) said on Sunday it had found two gold mining targets in an Ethiopian concession with enough tonnage and grade potential to suggest an economic discovery is possible. ASCOM plans to start drilling on the 800-square-kilometer Asosa concession in Western Ethiopia in October, it said in a statement. The company, …


Egypt 364-day T-bill avg yield rises to 10.503 pct

CAIRO: The average yield on Egyptian 364-day treasury bills rose slightly to 10.503 percent at an auction on Thursday from 10.380 percent at the last auction on Aug. 5. The central bank said it accepted bids for bills worth LE 3 billion Egyptian ($526 million), the same amount it was seeking. It accepted bids at …


Direct talks and their potential consequences

The Obama administration’s success in moving the Israeli-Palestinian talks from proximity to direct negotiations is an important achievement for making real progress. However, direct talks will not produce substantive results unless the United States takes a number of pivotal steps to insure that the progress made in the negotiations is irreversible, and will eventually lead …

Daily News Egypt

Beltone starts technical analysis traded equity fund

Cairo-based investment bank Beltone Financial will put LE 5 million ($880,000) into a new open-ended equity fund that will make investments relying only on technical analysis, Bloomberg reported. With LE 24.5 billion in assets under management, Beltone will issue shares in the fund Aug. 29 through government-owned Banque Misr, according to the fund’s prospectus. The …

Daily News Egypt

Ezz Steel Q2 net jumps, beats forecasts

Egypt’s Ezz Steel said on Thursday its second-quarter net profit more than tripled and forecast that growing global demand for steel would push prices higher in the second half of 2010. Egypt’s largest steel producer said net profit was LE 136 million ($23.8 million), compared with LE 37 million in the same quarter last year, …

Sherine El Madany

Abraaj Capital’s Riyada fund eyes Egyptian SMEs

“Small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are a key pillar of modern economies,” said Walid Bakr, director and executive committee member of Riyada Enterprise Development (RED). While SMEs contribute about 25 percent to Egypt’s GDP, this figure is far below the global average, sitting at about twice that amount, Bakr told Daily News Egypt in an …

Christopher Le Coq

Remains of settlement found in El-Kharga Oasis

CAIRO: Remains of an ancient settlement were discovered in the Um El-Mawagir area of the El-Kharga Oasis, the Supreme Council of Antiquities said Wednesday. Minister of Culture Farouk Hosni confirmed the discovery and added that the settlement has been dated back to the Second Intermediate Period (ca. 1650-1550 BC). This makes it about a thousand …

Daily News Egypt

Demystifying Basel II and bank risk management

We have all heard about — and probably even been impacted by — the economic crisis and the bank failures around the world that caused it. Many of us have wondered how this could happen and how a recurrence can be prevented in the future. This is important to us as we trust banks to …

Daily News Egypt

NBAD plans 22 new branches in Egypt in near-term

National Bank of Abu Dhabi, the second largest bank in the United Arab Emirates, said on Wednesday it plans to open around 22 branches in Egypt in the short-term as part of aims to become the largest Arab bank. The bank said in a statement it already had 28 branches in the most populous Arab …


At least 52 dead as car bombs target Iraq police, say officials

BAGHDAD: More than a dozen apparently coordinated car bombs targeting Iraqi police and other attacks killed 52 people on Wednesday, just days before the US military officially ends its combat mission here. The trail of bloodshed started in the capital Baghdad before stretching to the north and south of the country, hitting 10 cities and …

Daily News Egypt

Sinai Cement H1 net rises to $64.5 mln

Egypt’s Sinai Cement posted a 6.7 percent rise in consolidated net profit to LE 367.4 million ($64.5 million) in the first half of 2010, the stock exchange said on Sunday. The results were published after shares in Sinai Cement, the local unit of France’s Vicat, closed down 0.5 percent.  


Ex-Chevron head appointed to Aramco board

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s king has appointed the Chevron Corp.’s former chairman as a board member of Saudi Aramco, the country’s state-run oil giant. David O’Reilly’s appointment, reported by the Saudi Press Agency late Saturday, came as King Abdullah named a new board for Aramco. The company’s president, Khalid Al Falih remains Aramco’s chief executive. O’Reilly …


Egypt cuts rice crop area by nearly half: agency

Egypt cut by almost half the amount of land it used to sow rice in 2010 versus the previous year, saving the country 5-6 billion cubic meters of water, the official state news agency MENA said on Thursday. The amount of land on which rice was grown was reduced to 1.2 million feddans (1.2 million …


Citigroup cuts Air Arabia price target

Citigroup cut its share price target and earnings estimates for UAE-based budget carrier Air Arabia, following a disappointing second quarter, and cited an expected fall in 2010 average ticket price. Citigroup now sees average ticket price in 2010 falling by 2 percent, compared with its prior view of a 3 percent growth. Last week, Air …


Minister of Health pays ‘friendly’ visit to Prosecutor General

CAIRO: The Ministry of Health denied reports that Minister Hatem El-Gabali was summoned to the Prosecutor General’s office, stressing in a statement that his visit there was “friendly”. Minister of Health Hatem El-Gabali paid Prosecutor General Abdel Meguid Mahmoud a “friendly” visit to discuss a number of matters related to the ministry, the statement said. …

Safaa Abdoun

Suez Canal gets highest daily revenue since crisis

ISMAILIA: The Suez Canal last week earned its highest daily revenue since the 2008 financial crisis triggered a world trade slump, the canal authority said on Sunday, citing a recovering economy and canal improvements. The canal is an important source of foreign currency for Egypt, along with tourism, oil and gas exports and remittances from …

Daily News Egypt

Sewedy Cables Q2 net jumps on higher sales

CAIRO: Egypt’s El Sewedy Cables reported a 53 percent jump in second-quarter net profit on Monday after it took business from rivals weakened by the global economic slowdown. Sewedy, the Arab world’s biggest maker by market value of cables used in power transmission and telecoms, said net profit rose to LE 270.1 million ($47.4 million) …

Sherine El Madany

Global M&A involving sovereign wealth funds pick up in Q2

LONDON: Global corporate mergers and acquisitions activity involving sovereign wealth funds rose to more than $12 billion in the second quarter with 33 deals completed, Thomson Reuters data showed on Monday. Global announced M&A volumes involving state investment vehicles stood at $12.5 billion in the second quarter, up from just $1.1 billion in the first …

Daily News Egypt

Egypt’s Pioneers H1 net plunges 86.5 pct

CAIRO: Egyptian financial services firm Pioneers Holding posted an 86.5 percent decline in H1 net income to LE 10.5 million ($1.84 million), the stock exchange said on Sunday. Net income was 77.5 million pounds in the same period a year ago.


Egyptian Resorts H1 net drops, no land sales

CAIRO: Real estate firm Egyptian Resorts’ net profit plunged by more than 90 percent in the first six months of 2010, the bourse said on Sunday, after the company failed to sell any land. But analysts said the company’s profit could recover as soon as next year thanks to new management and a partnership to …


Jordan sends aid to Pakistan

AMMAN: A Jordanian plane carrying 3.5 tonnes of food and medical supplies left for Pakistan on Sunday to help aid millions of people hit by devastating floods, an official said. "The plane also carries a 25-member medical team, including nine doctors, as well as 21,000 typhoid and cholera vaccines," Brigadier Mohammad Mheisen of Jordan’s Royal …


Egypt’s Misr Beni Suef H1 net profit drops 4 pct

CAIRO: Egypt’s Misr Beni Suef Cement posted a 4 percent fall in net profit to LE 193.5 million ($33.9 million) for the first half of 2010, the stock exchange said on Sunday. The company, which gave no further details on its results, had made a net profit of LE 201.3 million in the same period …


Maadi ferry case adjourned to Sept. 4

CAIRO: The first appeal hearing of the Maadi ferry case Saturday, which left nine girls dead, two missing and three injured, was adjourned to Sept. 4. Islamist lawyer Montasser Al-Zayyat joined the team representing defendant Ali Eweis, the 18-year-old who rented out his older brother’s small boat to15 school girls and their supervisors on July …

Heba Fahmy

Egypt pound again tests strong support

The Egyptian pound has again tested chart support against the dollar at 5.70 in line with the global trend to dump riskier assets on concern over the fragile US economy. This was a negative surprise to some investors who have been buying Egyptian T-bills in the last few weeks in the belief that the pound …


Vimpelcom eyes Italy’s Wind, Egypt’s Orascom: paper

Telecoms group Vimpelcom Ltd may buy Italy’s No.3 mobile operator Wind and 51 percent of Egypt’s Orascom Telecom from tycoon Naguib Sawiris, Kommersant reported on Thursday citing an unnamed source. The acquisition would mark a major expansion for the newly created entity, formed earlier this year through a merger of Russia’s number two mobile operator …


GB Auto Q2 net profit jumps 92 pct

GB Auto said on Monday its second-quarter net profit surged 92 percent to LE 77.7 million ($13.7 million), exceeding analyst forecast. The firm, Egypt’s biggest listed automobile assembler, said net profit was LE 40.4 million in the same quarter a year earlier. Investment bank EFG-Hermes had forecast the firm’s net profit at LE 71 million, …