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Qatar says reserves enough to boost banks; no bad loan concerns in Saudi

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Qatar says reserves enough to boost banks; no bad loan concerns in Saudi

MIDDLE EAST AND NORTH AFRICA

* Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority Governor Ahmed al-Kholifey said there is no concern about banks' bad loans and that there was no reason for the local currency to decline in the forward foreign exchange market, while noting positive economic indicators in the first half, Argaam wrote. Al-Kholifey also said that the central bank is currently processing three applications for banking licenses, but did not name the applicants, Reuters noted.

* Qatar Central Bank Governor Abdullah bin Saud al-Thani said the government has sufficient reserves to prop up its banks and dismissed as false reports that the country's banking system is under strain, Reuters wrote, citing Qatar's Lusail news service. The central bank governor also stressed that banks should only consider asking the state and central bank for funds as a last resort.

* Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank PJSC intends to increase funding for its digital technologies, but is in no rush to significantly reduce the number of its branches, according to Phil King, head of retail banking at the lender, The National reported.

* Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank PJSC said all of its online banking services have been restored following a three-day outage necessitated by a major system upgrade, Arabian Business reported.

* France-based CFM Indosuez Wealth Management SA named Sebastian Graewert head of unit CA Indosuez (Switzerland) SA's representative office in Dubai.

* Investcorp Bank BSC nominated Vice Chairman Yousef Al-Ebraheem to replace Nemir Kirdar as chairman of the board. Khalid Al Zayani will take over as vice chairman.

* Malaysia's CIMB Group Holdings Bhd. said it obtained necessary regulatory approvals to close Bahrain-based unit CIMB Middle East BSC (C).

* Warba Bank KSCP said it is taking part in a five-year, syndicated loan worth $1.25 billion for the Islamic Development Bank, with an annual return of 2.661%, Kuwait News Agency reported.

* Kuwait-based First Investment Co. KSCP said Fawaz Mubarak Othman Alayar, vice president of the assets department, has resigned, effective Dec. 31.

* Wafa Mohammed Wadee Badawi, CEO of Kuwait-based Al-Aman Investment Co., has resigned. Her last day will be Dec. 31.

* African Export-Import Bank said it raised roughly $165.9 million via the private placement of 38.6 million depositary receipts.

* Economists said the Central Bank of Egypt's decision to restore the required reserve ratio on local-currency deposits to 14% from 10% beginning Oct. 10 may signal and pave the way for a future benchmark interest rate cut, Reuters wrote.

EAST AND WEST AFRICA

* The Central Bank of Kenya initiated a review of the country's credit information sharing system, following complaints that banks are using client data to blacklist defaulters instead of rewarding loyal borrowers, The East African reported. The regulator has blamed credit reference bureaus for using different methods in calculating a borrower's probability of default.

* Moody's placed on review for downgrade the B1 global-scale long-term local-currency deposit ratings and the "b1" baseline and adjusted baseline credit assessments of KCB Bank Kenya Ltd., Equity Bank (Kenya) Ltd. and Co-operative Co-operative Bank of Kenya Ltd., among other ratings. The action was mainly driven by a potential weakening of the Kenyan government's credit profile, particularly the country's fiscal strength and liquidity risk, as captured by the agency's earlier decision to put Kenya's B1 long-term issuer rating on review for downgrade.

* Ghana's equity and debt market is too small to supply the 9 billion cedis in cash that the country's lenders must raise to meet new minimum capital requirements by the end of 2018, according to George Bodo, head of banking research at Ecobank Capital Ltd., Bloomberg News wrote.

* Guaranty Trust Bank Plc said its $400 million international cash tender offer attracted about $123.1 million of valid tenders. As a result of the offer, the outstanding principal amount is $276.9 million.

* Mali is to launch a five-year, $15 billion bond offering in the West African Economic and Monetary Union, Le Journal de L'Economie Malienne wrote. The deadline for submitting tenders is Oct. 10 and the maturity date is Sept. 7, 2022. The nominal value per unit is 10,000 CFA francs and interest will be paid at a rate of 6.15% per annum from the first year.

* The Central Bank of Nigeria dismissed a report alleging that Deputy Governor Bayo Adelabu was arrested and forced to forfeit money to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, ThisDay wrote.

* Separately, the Nigerian central bank said that over the last three years, it has so far recovered more than 50 billion naira of bank customers' money that were unduly or illegally charged by erring lenders, Premium Times reported.

CENTRAL AND SOUTHERN AFRICA

* The South African Reserve Bank said the country's weak economic growth may allow for "some limited scope" for lower interest rates to have positive countercyclical effects in the short term. The central bank's monetary policy committee last month decided to maintain its key rate at 6.75%. Bloomberg News has a report.

* South African banks are piling pressure on auditing firm KPMG to release the results of an independent inquiry into services it provided to the controversial Gupta family, who are known for their close ties to President Jacob Zuma, Bloomberg News reported. KPMG's South Africa CEO Nhlamu Dlomu said the terms of the probe will be disclosed Oct. 12 and that its eventual findings will be disclosed.

* Nedbank Group Ltd. said it is in talks with consultancy firm McKinsey & Co. regarding the latter's alleged involvement in disputed government contracts and will wait for the results of the U.S. firm's probe into the matter before deciding whether or not to terminate its services, Bloomberg News wrote.

* Bank of Mauritius Governor Ramesh Basant Roi urged caution among banks seeking to expand in Africa amid the rapid expansion of cross-border banking activities in the region, and urged them to increase lending to businesses in the country, the Financial Times wrote.

* More than a third of Angolan financial institutions have failed to submit data on U.S. account holders in line with the U.S. Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act, Expansão reported, citing the African country's AGT tax agency. It said the deadline for banks, insurance companies and other financial entities to present the information was July 31, but only 38 of the 60 institutions obliged.

IN OTHER PARTS OF THE WORLD

Asia-Pacific: Prudential seeks Vietnam consumer biz sale; Bangladesh, India ink financing deal

Europe: UBS CEO expects huge job cuts; ECB drafts new NPL rules; Orange Bank to launch

Latin America: Banco de Costa Rica chair suspended; Banco do Brasil assumes Banco Postal costs

North America: Despite breach, Equifax bags $7.3M IRS contract; ex-CEO to face Senate panel

North America Insurance: Maria losses in Puerto Rico may exceed Harvey, Irma; $29B in disaster aid sought

Sheryl Obejera, Henni Abdelghani, Sophie Davies, and Helen Popper contributed to this report.

The Daily Dose Middle East and Africa has an editorial deadline of 5 a.m. London time. Some external links may require a subscription.