Lanka shares rise to six-month high

Updated 19 April 2013
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Lanka shares rise to six-month high

COLOMBO: Sri Lankan shares hit a six-month high yesterday, as investors bought diversified shares and retail investors came back after the central bank said there would be room for further monetary policy easing.
The central bank on Tuesday kept key monetary policy rates unchanged for a fourth straight month, as expected, but left the door open for easing later as inflation is expected to slow further.
The main stock index gained 0.4 percent, or 23.30 points, to 5,891.83, its highest close since Oct. 2, 2012.
“Retail investors and margin traders are active as they see at least stabilization of interest rates as a positive sign and (the central bank) will not increase the rates in the short term,” said a stockbroker.
Expectations of falling interest rates have boosted sentiment, after Treasury Secretary P. B. Jayasundera recently said Sri Lanka’s interest rates should fall in May-June as the borrowing needs of loss-making state energy companies recede. The index has risen for the last six straight sessions since the treasury secretary’s comments.
The turnover was at 800.8 million rupees ($ 6.38 million) yesterday, less than this year’s daily average of about 965.1 million rupees.
Foreign investors were net buyers of 159.9 million rupees worth of shares, extending the year-to-date net foreign inflow to 7.31 billion rupees. Last year, the bourse saw a net inflow of $ 303 million.
The rupee edged down for a third straight session to 125.72/78 to the dollar, from Wednesday’s close of 125.60/62, due to demand from importers for the greenback, said currency dealers.
The rupee has been on the rise since mid-March on inflows from remittances and exporter dollar sales ahead of the traditional new year, which most Sri Lankans celebrated on April 13 and April 14.


Potential SABIC deal would affect Saudi Aramco IPO time frame, says CEO Nasser

Updated 20 July 2018
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Potential SABIC deal would affect Saudi Aramco IPO time frame, says CEO Nasser

JEDDAH: A potential deal to buy a stake in petrochemical maker SABIC would affect the time frame of Saudi Aramco's initial public offering (IPO), the oil firm's president and CEO Amin H. Nasser said Friday. 

The IPO of around 5 percent of Aramco, which was initially to take place this year but is now more likely to happen later, would be the world's biggest listing, raising up to $100 billion.

Nasser said that buying a stake in a chemical company like SABIC would positively affect Aramco's revenue, Al Arabiya reported.

“We are still in the very early stages of the discussion to buy a stake in SABIC,” the Aramco CEO said.

“Aramco is ready for the initial offer and the timing remains subject to the state's decision.”

Saudi Aramco said on Thursday it is looking at the possibility of buying a stake in SABIC, a move that could boost the state oil giant’s market valuation ahead of the planned IPO.
Aramco said in a statement that it was in “very early-stage discussions” with the Kingdom’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) to acquire the stake in SABIC via a private transaction. It has no plans to acquire any publicly held shares, it said.
In a separate statement, PIF also said talks about a sale were in early stages. “There is a possibility that no agreement will be reached in relation to this potential transaction,” it said.