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Lebanon’s business owners fear shortages of cash, supplies

Sunday, 17 November 2019

Lebanon’s protests have closed banks, blocked transport routes and reduced the availability of cash, creating a perilous environment for small businesses, owners say.The protests – now a month old – were initially fueled by discontent over the economy, among other grievances, but the prolonged disruption has ended up making matters worse, leaving many salaries unpaid, imported goods at risk and families with less money sent from relatives abroad.“What we’re afraid ...

Egypt to cut prices of subsidized staples: Ministry

Saturday, 16 November 2019

Egypt is to reduce the prices of subsidized food staples from next month, the supply ministry spokesman said on Saturday, as the country’s economy shows signs of recovery. “Prices of cooking oil, sugar, rice and flour will be reduced starting the first of December,” said spokesman Ahmed Kamal. He said the measures aimed to make goods available “in suitable quantities and prices.” Last month, the government reinstated 1.8 million Egyptians to a food subsidy program ...

Lebanon bank staff union to discuss ending strike after receiving security plan

Saturday, 16 November 2019

Lebanon’s bank staff union will meet on Sunday or Monday to decide whether to call off a strike, after receiving a plan to secure banks with a stepped up police presence, the president of the Federation of Syndicates of Bank Employees said on Saturday.The union began the strike on Tuesday over safety fears, as protests against political leaders sweep Lebanon and depositors demand access to their money after banks imposed new curbs.George al-Haj said banks could re-open as early as Monday ...

US to extend license for its companies to continue business with Huawei: Report

Saturday, 16 November 2019

The Trump administration is set to issue a two-week extension of a license allowing US companies to continue doing business with China’s Huawei Technologies Co Ltd, two sources familiar with the deliberations said. The extension of around two weeks is far shorter than the prior 90-day extension and a longer extension is in the works but has not yet been finalized due to regulatory hurdles, said one source who was briefed on the matter. After adding Huawei to an ...

S&P downgrades Lebanon’s credit rating amid ongoing protests

Saturday, 16 November 2019

S&P Global Ratings said on Friday that it lowered Lebanon’s long-term and short-term foreign and local currency sovereign credit ratings to ‘CCC/C’ from ‘B-/B’, citing rising financial and monetary risks. The outlook on Lebanon is negative, S&P said http://bit.ly/2CLNmyt, specifying that it reflects the risk to Lebanon’s creditworthiness from rising financial and monetary pressures tied to recent widespread protests and the resignation of ...

Turkish unemployment rises to 14 percent in July-September

Friday, 15 November 2019

Turkey’s unemployment rate rose to 14 percent in the July-Sept period from 13.9 percent a month earlier, official data showed on Friday, with youth unemployment hitting a record high of 27.4 percent as a recession continued to hit workers. A currency crisis last year depressed economic activity and weakened the jobs market, although the latest industrial production data has pointed to a recovery in economic activity. The unemployment rate rose from 13.9 percent a month earlier and 11.1 ...

Arab Fund offers $305 mln loan to cash-starved Sudan

Friday, 15 November 2019

Sudan said Thursday it would receive a $305 million loan from an Arab fund to help tackle the country’s worsening economic crisis led by soaring food prices and foreign currency shortage. Sudan’s economic woes had led to nationwide protests that resulted in the ouster of longtime ruler Omar al-Bashir in April. On Thursday a delegation from the Arab Monetary Fund met Sudanese Finance Minister Ibrahim Al-Badawi. “During the meeting, the delegation said the fund plans to support ...

S&P lowers credit ratings on three Lebanese banks on liquidity pressures

Thursday, 14 November 2019

S&P Global Ratings said on Thursday it was lowering the ratings on three Lebanese banks further into junk, citing rising liquidity pressures due to faster deposit erosion.Long-term credit ratings on Bank Audi, Blom Bank, and Bankmed were lowered to CCC from B-, the ratings agency said, adding the ratings would remain on CreditWatch, making them vulnerable to the risk of further downgrades.Lebanon’s banks have been hit by liquidity pressure in recent weeks as depositors demand access to ...

Germany avoids recession as it reports slight economic growth in Q3

Thursday, 14 November 2019

Germany narrowly avoided a recession on Thursday as official figures report the country’s economy grew by 0.1 percent in the third quarter of 2019.A country enters a technical recession when it reports two consecutive quarters of negative economic growth.Germany’s Federal Statistics Office said that the positive contributions to Q3 2019 mainly came from consumption. Compared with Q2 2019, household consumption increased, while government investments in infrastructure also supported ...

HSBC, Emirates NBD cut jobs in UAE as banks aim to reduce costs: Report

Thursday, 14 November 2019

HSBC Holdings has laid off about 40 bankers in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Emirates NBD is cutting around 100 jobs, as banks in the Arab world’s second-biggest economy reduce costs, sources familiar with the move told Reuters. The job cuts come at a time of weak economic growth, especially in the region’s business hub - Dubai - which is suffering from a property downturn. HSBC’s redundancies came after the London-based bank reported a sharp fall in earnings and warned ...

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