Asian stocks higher after Wall Street rises to new record

Asian stocks higher after Wall Street rises to new record
Overnight, Wall Street’s benchmark S&P 500 index closed 0.7 percent higher. (File/AFP)
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Updated 09 February 2021

Asian stocks higher after Wall Street rises to new record

Asian stocks higher after Wall Street rises to new record
  • In Washington, President Joe Biden and Congressional Democrats appear to be moving forward with a $1.9 trillion coronavirus stimulus plan

BEIJING: Asian stocks were mostly higher Tuesday after Wall St. rose to a new record.
Shanghai, Tokyo and Seoul rose while Hong Kong declined.
Overnight, Wall Street’s benchmark S&P 500 index closed 0.7 percent higher. Investors were encouraged by company earnings, news that a surge in coronavirus cases is easing, progress in distributing vaccines and the possibility of government stimulus.
Despite concern prices might be rising too fast, investor optimism means “the momentum behind this reflation trade remains a force to reckon with,” said Jingyi Pan of IG in a report.
The Shanghai Composite Index gained 0.7 percent to 3,558.63 and the Nikkei 225 in Tokyo rose 0.4 percent to 29,497.51. The Hang Seng in Hong Kong was off under 0.1% at 29,312.65.
The Kospi in Seoul advanced 0.6% to 3,110.81 and Sydney’s S&P-ASX 200 shed 0.5% to 6,846.00. New Zealand retreated while Singapore and Jakarta advanced.
On Wall Street, the S&P 500 rose 28.76 points to 3,915.59. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.8% to 31,385.76. The Nasdaq composite climbed 1 percent to 13,987.64.
In Washington, President Joe Biden and Congressional Democrats appear to be moving forward with a $1.9 trillion coronavirus stimulus plan. That includes a rise in the federally required minimum wage and cash aid to households.
“Market participants doubled down on fiscal stimulus bets” after US Federal Reserve officials downplayed concerns the spending might fuel inflation, said Mizuho Bank in a report.
Tesla rose 1.3 percent after the company said it purchased $1.5 billion in Bitcoin and pIans to allow customers to pay for their electric vehicles with the digital currency. Bitcoin was up 13.2 percent to $43,252, according to digital currency brokerage Coinbase.
In another sign of optimism, Treasury yields continued to push mostly higher. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 1.17 percent from 1.15 percent late Friday, more than double where it was six months ago. While there have been near-zero signs of inflation in recent months, investors believe improving economic fortunes and trillions of dollars in stimulus could make stocks more attractive, and therefore make bond yields rise as their prices fall.
In energy markets, benchmark US crude rose 50 cents to $58.47 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract rose $1.12 on Monday to $57.97. Brent crude, used to price international oils, gained 56 cents to $61.12 per barrel in London. It advanced $1.22 the previous session to $60.56.
The dollar fell to 104.92 yen from Monday’s 105.22. The euro rose to $1.2083 from $1.2055.


Turkish research group faces criminal charges over inflation data

Turkish research group faces criminal charges over inflation data
Updated 09 May 2021

Turkish research group faces criminal charges over inflation data

Turkish research group faces criminal charges over inflation data
  • The group started publishing its own inflation data in September amid claims from opposition parties that the official agency is under-reporting price increases

DUBAI: Turkey’s statistics agency filed a criminal complaint against a group of local researchers publishing alternative inflation data, Bloomberg reported.

The government body demanded ENAGroup, an independent inflation research group, be fined for “purposefully defaming” the official statistics institution and “misguiding public opinion,” according to documents seen by the news wire.
The group started publishing its own inflation data in September amid claims from opposition parties that the official agency is under-reporting price increases, Bloomberg said
ENAGroup’s inflation figures are higher than the official data. Its consumer price index rose 2.62 percent in April from a month earlier, more than double the 1.1 percent reported by the official agency. The group reported an annual inflation rate of 36.7 percent for 2020, Bloomberg reported.
Turkey’s Treasury and Finance Minister Lutfi Elvan said that the statistics agency filed a complaint against a group “for the first time in the history of the Turkish Republic.”
The group aims to “damage and discredit the Turkish Statistical Institute” by spreading misleading data that are used by opposition parties, Elvan said.

 


Abu Dhabi's ADNOC said to invite banks to pitch for bookrunner roles for drilling unit IPO

Abu Dhabi's ADNOC said to invite banks to pitch for bookrunner roles for drilling unit IPO
Updated 09 May 2021

Abu Dhabi's ADNOC said to invite banks to pitch for bookrunner roles for drilling unit IPO

Abu Dhabi's ADNOC said to invite banks to pitch for bookrunner roles for drilling unit IPO
  • ADNOC is planning to take the unit public in the third quarter
  • ADNOC Drilling owns and operates a large fleet of rigs

DUBAI: Abu Dhabi National Oil Co (ADNOC) has invited investment banks to pitch for bookrunner roles for the initial public offering of its drilling unit, two sources told Reuters on Sunday.
The oil giant invited a handful of international and local banks to take part in the process of the public share sale of ADNOC Drilling, which is due later this month, they said.
ADNOC is planning to take the unit public in the third quarter, they added. One of the sources previously said ADNOC could raise at least $1 billion from the share sale.
ADNOC, which supplies nearly 3 percent of global oil demand, declined to comment when contacted by Reuters on Sunday.
ADNOC Drilling owns and operates a large fleet of rigs, including 75 onshore rigs, 20 offshore jackup rigs, and 11 well water rigs, according to its website.
The drilling business is critical for ADNOC’s upstream operations, helping the oil company reach its production targets.
ADNOC Chief Executive Sultan Al-Jaber has been chief architect of the transformation strategy the company embarked on more than four years ago, building an investment team to monetise assets and raise funds from international private equity groups.
It is also planning to float Fertiglobe, a fertiliser joint venture with Dutch-listed chemical producer OCI later this year.


Google-backed Firefly comes to the Middle East after Abu Dhabi acquisition

Google-backed Firefly comes to the Middle East after Abu Dhabi acquisition
Updated 09 May 2021

Google-backed Firefly comes to the Middle East after Abu Dhabi acquisition

Google-backed Firefly comes to the Middle East after Abu Dhabi acquisition
  • IHC-owned Multiply Marketing Consultancy (MMC) acquired the minority stake in the company

DUBAI: A unit of Abu Dhabi’s International Holding Company (IHC) has acquired a stake in Google-backed Firefly, which provides street-level digital media on taxis and rideshare vehicles.
IHC-owned Multiply Marketing Consultancy (MMC) acquired the minority stake in the company, it said in a stock exchange filing on Sunday.
Firefly operates across major US cities, working with major taxi and rideshare companies to install advertising displays atop their vehicles.
The proprietary screens feature content based on location, and are Internet-enabled. The platform attracts millions of impressions per month, according to a statement.
The deal will expand the company’s operations in the Middle East, and will set up an office within MMC’s Abu Dhabi headquarters.
“Investments in our communications vertical ensure that our media teams are servicing our local clients with the latest, most innovative and analytically-precise technology available on the market,” MMC chief Samia Bouazza said.
Gulf governments are ramping up their technology investments in a regional race for supremacy in the sector which is seen as a critical path to economic diversification.
Firefly will become part of Multiply Group’s communications vertical, which includes global agency MMC, Viola, as well as other minority stakes in companies such as Yieldmo, a digital advertising and attention analytics company.


ADQ-owned Senaat offers to merge Arkan Building Materials with Emirates Steel

ADQ-owned Senaat offers to merge Arkan Building Materials with Emirates Steel
Updated 09 May 2021

ADQ-owned Senaat offers to merge Arkan Building Materials with Emirates Steel

ADQ-owned Senaat offers to merge Arkan Building Materials with Emirates Steel
  • The proposed deal implies an equity value for Arkan of about 1.4 billion dirhams

DUBAI: Abu Dhabi industrial conglomerate Senaat has submitted an offer to Arkan Building Materials to merge it with its own Emirates Steel unit.
Under the proposed deal, Emirates Steel would be transferred to Arkan in consideration of a convertible instrument which would on the closing of the deal convert to 5.1 billion ordinary shares at a fixed price of 0.798 dirhams per share in Arkan’s capital.
The proposed deal implies an equity value for Arkan of about 1.4 billion dirhams, the building materials company said in a filing to the Abu Dhabi stock exchange.
Post completion, ADQ-owned Senaat would own approximately 87.5 percent of the entire issued share capital of the combined group
Should an agreement be reached between the two parties, a general assembly meeting would consider approving the transaction during the second half of this year, Arkan said in the statement.
Emirates Steel is a leading integrated steel manufacturer in the Middle East region, based in Abu Dhabi.

 


Saudi property developer Alandalus profits jump on office income

Saudi property developer Alandalus profits jump on office income
Updated 09 May 2021

Saudi property developer Alandalus profits jump on office income

Saudi property developer Alandalus profits jump on office income
  • Overall revenues gained by a fifth over the period, helped by the acquisition last June of QBIC Plaza in Riyadh

DUBAI: Saudi property developer Alandalus said first quarter net profit rose 55 percent to about SR19 million ($5.1 million), driven by its office business.
Overall revenues gained by a fifth over the period, helped by the acquisition last June of QBIC Plaza in Riyadh.
The high-end office complex located close to the intersection of King Abdulaziz Road with Northern Ring Branch Road in the Al-Ghadeer district of the capital, is fully leased to the Ministry of Housing for a period of three years.
“Despite the continuation of the pandemic and its effects on society, the company’s malls reported healthy footfall rates, which contributed to achieving positive results in the first quarter of the year,” said Alandalus CEO Hathal bin Saad Al-Otaibi. “We also affirm the continuity of the company’s strategic approach to maintaining our tenant mix and progressing steadily toward achieving our future targets, God willing. “
The developer’s offices and malls business helped to compensate for the impact of the pandemic on its hospitality unit where occupancy levels fell.