Saudi stocks likely to maintain rally

Updated 12 January 2013
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Saudi stocks likely to maintain rally

The Saudi stock market is likely to open higher when it resumes trading today after the weekend, encouraged by yesterday’s gains in global markets, analysts said.
An improving economic outlook held world stock prices near a 20-month high yesterday.
A massive stimulus plan in Japan also boosted optimism about future business activity, but worries persisted about global demand and a possible drag from the debt ceiling fight in Washington, spurring selling in oil and basic metals.
The Tadawul All-Share Index broke the psychological barrier of 7,000 points mark last week, up 186.4 points and closed at 7,126.71 points. It posted weekly growth of 2.69 percent.
“With the Saudi market enjoying a rally of consecutive positive trading sessions since the start of the year, local fundamentals push for this trend to continue,” commented Basil Al-Ghalayini, CEO OF BMG Financial Group.
“From a global perspective, this trend might witness a negative impact as the oil tumbling toward $110 a barrel on growing concern that oil demand may be weakening in the short term as global economic activity remains subdued.”
Jarmo T Kotilaine, a regional analyst, commented: “The Kingdom continues to play a unique role in stabilizing the oil market at a time when concerns about demand erosion persist and non-OPEC production looks likely to accelerate somewhat from last year’s modest pace.”
Kotilaine added: “However, the pattern in this area is likely to remain one of continued volatility as periods of optimism are interspersed with bouts of increased risk aversion. Overall, global oil demand is continuing to go up, although more slowly than previously projected.”
Brent February crude was down $1.95 at $109.94 a barrel at 1539 GMT, after dropping to $109.60 and having reached $111.95.


Thousands of expats quit Oman as visa ban continues

Updated 19 min 3 sec ago
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Thousands of expats quit Oman as visa ban continues

  • Expats make up 44.1 percent of Oman’s total population which stands at 4,612,824
  • Earlier this year, expat workers in the country faced a six-month visa ban across 87 industries

DUBAI: Oman’s expat population has dropped 2 percent according to figures released in June, 2018, compared to the same time the previous year, local daily Times of Oman reported.
According to government figures there were 43,000 fewer expats recorded in 2018 compared to the previous year – bringing the population of foreign nationals down to 2,035,952.
Expats make up 44.1 percent of Oman’s total population which stands at 4,612,824.
Earlier this year, expat workers in the country faced a six-month visa ban across 87 industries, including media, engineering, marketing and sales, accounting and finance, IT, insurance, technicians, administration and HR.
The Oman government announced last month that the ban would remain in place and that it was considering adding more professions, adding that Omanis should always be the first choice for jobs in the country.
The Omanization drive is part of a government’s push to recruit more of its own citizens, a similar push is underway across the GCC where countries like Saudi Arabia and Kuwait have also been trying to increase the number of locals in employment.