Cars drive past the Kingdom Centre Tower in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, January 30, 2018. REUTERS/Faisal Al Nasser
The Kingdom Centre Tower in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Faisal Al Nasser/Reuters

Saudi Arabia central bank ends most repos as liquidity improves



Saudi Arabia's central bank said that it would stop all but one repurchase agreements amid an improvement of liquidity in the banking sector.

"The Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority has decided to suspend term repo facility for maturities of seven, 28 and 90 days with immediate effect," the central bank said in a brief statement on its website on Tuesday.

"This decision is reflective of recent market developments in the context of maintaining monetary stability."

Sama did not elaborate. The one-day repo remains.

The world’s largest oil exporter introduced seven-day and 28-day repurchase agreements in September 2016 as tight liquidity in the banking system threatened to add to the economic strain of lower crude prices, according to Bloomberg. The 90-day pacts were introduced a month later. Since then, liquidity has increased significantly.

For the first time since the global financial crisis in 2009, Saudi interbank offered rates are below their US dollar equivalent in London. On Monday, the gap was about 10 basis points.

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Saudi Arabia was hit hard by the collapse in oil prices that started in the summer of 2014 and which in a two-year period shaved more than 70 per cent from the price of oil. As a result, government entities yanked deposits from banks to help cut the budget deficit. The government also sold bonds both locally and abroad.

In October 2016, Saudi Arabia sold $17.5bn worth of bonds internationally for the first time to help shore up its finances to offset revenue shortfalls from stagnant oil prices. Prior to that, the government was selling 20bn Saudi riyals (Dh19.58bn) of bonds to banks each month since mid-2015 to help finance its budget deficit.

The ratings agency Fitch said in October that most banks had strong liquidity coverage ratios of 200 per cent at the end of the first half of 2017 amid a rebound in oil prices.

During the same time there was a 1.4 per cent rise in non-performing loans amid sluggish economic growth. The agency said Saudi Arabia's GDP growth slowed to 1.4 per cent in 2016 from 3.4 per cent in 2015 and is expected to grow below 1 per cent in 2017 and 2018.

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Rating: ****

COMPANY PROFILE

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Founders: Dr Noha Khater and Rania Kadry
Based: Egypt
Number of staff: 120
Investment: Bootstrapped, with support from Insead and Egyptian government, seed round of
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Sarfira

Director: Sudha Kongara Prasad

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Types of bank fraud

1) Phishing

Fraudsters send an unsolicited email that appears to be from a financial institution or online retailer. The hoax email requests that you provide sensitive information, often by clicking on to a link leading to a fake website.

2) Smishing

The SMS equivalent of phishing. Fraudsters falsify the telephone number through “text spoofing,” so that it appears to be a genuine text from the bank.

3) Vishing

The telephone equivalent of phishing and smishing. Fraudsters may pose as bank staff, police or government officials. They may persuade the consumer to transfer money or divulge personal information.

4) SIM swap

Fraudsters duplicate the SIM of your mobile number without your knowledge or authorisation, allowing them to conduct financial transactions with your bank.

5) Identity theft

Someone illegally obtains your confidential information, through various ways, such as theft of your wallet, bank and utility bill statements, computer intrusion and social networks.

6) Prize scams

Fraudsters claiming to be authorised representatives from well-known organisations (such as Etisalat, du, Dubai Shopping Festival, Expo2020, Lulu Hypermarket etc) contact victims to tell them they have won a cash prize and request them to share confidential banking details to transfer the prize money.

The years Ramadan fell in May

1987

1954

1921

1888

Kill

Director: Nikhil Nagesh Bhat

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Rating: 4.5/5

Our legal advisor

Ahmad El Sayed is Senior Associate at Charles Russell Speechlys, a law firm headquartered in London with offices in the UK, Europe, the Middle East and Hong Kong.

Experience: Commercial litigator who has assisted clients with overseas judgments before UAE courts. His specialties are cases related to banking, real estate, shareholder disputes, company liquidations and criminal matters as well as employment related litigation. 

Education: Sagesse University, Beirut, Lebanon, in 2005.

Dr Amal Khalid Alias revealed a recent case of a woman with daughters, who specifically wanted a boy.

A semen analysis of the father showed abnormal sperm so the couple required IVF.

Out of 21 eggs collected, six were unused leaving 15 suitable for IVF.

A specific procedure was used, called intracytoplasmic sperm injection where a single sperm cell is inserted into the egg.

On day three of the process, 14 embryos were biopsied for gender selection.

The next day, a pre-implantation genetic report revealed four normal male embryos, three female and seven abnormal samples.

Day five of the treatment saw two male embryos transferred to the patient.

The woman recorded a positive pregnancy test two weeks later. 

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Based: UAE
Industry: Refurbished electronics
Funds raised so far: $10m
Investors: Flat6Labs, Resonance and various others


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