Thursday, 17 August 2017

It’s MPC Day — expect interest rates to be left on hold


What We’re Tracking Today

It’s interest rate day, and consensus is you can expect the central bank to leave rates on hold: The Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee is meeting today to decide on interest rates. A Reuters poll of economists found them expecting the CBE to leave rates unchanged after last month’s surprise 200 bps bump.

Ratings agency Moody’s is set to publish tomorrow its update for Egypt. Trading data suggests room for an upgrade of “at least one notch,” according to the Goldman Sachs report we highlighted yesterday. Pharos Holdings agrees and sees potential for an upgrade to B2 from the current rating of B3, supported by three factors: improved economic growth rate results and outlook, narrower overall and primary deficits, and lower external vulnerabilities. Pharos’ full report is here (pdf).

Cabinet will be convening today to discuss the executive regulations of the Investment Act before sending the document off to the Council of State (Maglis Al Dawla) for a final legal review, Prime Minister Sherif Ismail said yesterday, according to Al Shorouk. The cabinet is also wrapping up its mid-year performance review, which it intends to present to President Abdel Fattah El Sisi and the House.

The Finance Ministry was expected to announce tax revenue figures for FY2016-17 this week. Vice Minister of Finance Amr El Monayer gave a preview on Monday.

Are we (globally) in a bubble? On an otherwise slow news morning, three pieces have us thinking today about what we might expect on the global macro backdrop for the rest of this year and into 2017. If you read only one piece, make it the FT’s The perils of calling the peak of the equities bull run, which notes that “investors are struggling to work out when or if a crash will come” as “today’s stock markets are overvalued.” It’s a particularly solid and interesting piece with one of the best ledes we’ve read in a piece of financial writing in ages.

From there, stay with the salmon-colored paper and go read EM rally seen rolling on as valuations remain sound, which quotes the head of EM debt at BNP Paribas Asset Management as noting, “We are five quarters into the emerging market rally and there are still a lot of naysayers. At every turn there are 1,000 reasons why it’s overdone or we are going to have a pullback or a collapse is coming. We think this is the real deal and will be a multiyear rally in emerging market assets. We see unequivocal evidence that investors are investing back into EMs and they are starting from a low base in terms of exposure to emerging markets.” Then top it off with Bloomberg’s assertion that the Global Economy Looks Set for a Year of Faster, Firmer Growth.

On The Horizon

A World Bank delegation is set to visit Egypt this coming Sunday through Thursday to discuss signing the third and final USD 1 bn tranche of its USD 3 bn loan, according to a statement from the Investment and International Cooperation Ministry. Another WB delegation will visit next month to follow up on the USD 500 mn Upper Egypt Development program. Minister Sahar Nasr discussed investment policy and supporting the private sector with World Bank Country Director Asad Alam at a meeting yesterday.

The resumption of flights to Egypt, Dabaa to top Shoukry-Lavrov meeting next week: Airport security is expected to top the agenda when Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry meets with Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov in Russia next Sunday and Monday, the Egyptian embassy in Moscow said, according to Vestnik Kavkaza. Last we heard Russia has again deemed our airport security unsatisfactory, saying last month that “the Egyptian side has not yet resolved all issues related to aviation security.” Shoukry will also meet with Russia’s Trade and Industry Minister Denis Manturov, where we expect discussions will include Russia’s industrial zone. Alongside Libya and other regional issues, look for the Daba’a nuclear power plant to also be on the agenda. Our take is there will be no resumption of direct flights to Egypt until the contracts are signed — or we make it conclusively clear they never will be, in which case Moscow can use the issue as leverage on another issue of strategic importance. Take a moment to read Rosatom’s latest lobbying piece on the case for Dabaa here (pdf), if you’re so inclined. The piece is being run by content aggregators including Trade Arabia after being sent out by PR firms this week.

The National Elections Commission should be in final form before the end of August, according to Youm7. The list of nominees for the commission was delivered to the presidency on Sunday; the expectation is that President Abdel Fattah El Sisi will nominate council members when he’s back from his present African tour.

Enterprise+: Last Night’s Talk Shows

It was a night of quiet monotony on the airwaves last night that left us yearning for the return of Lamees Al Hadidi and Amr Adib, who are still out on summer break.

The decision to offer a 50% discount on port fees is part of a larger plan to attract moremaritime traffic and not the result of decreased traffic in the Suez Canal, Mostafa El Deeb, a consultant to the Transport Ministry, told fill-in host Dina Zahra on Hona Al Asema (watch, runtime 7:21). (We have more in the Speed Round, below).

The newly-issued Industrial Permits Act got airtime on Masaa DMC. The act is a “dream come true,” Federation of Egyptian Industries boss and House rep. Mohamed Elsewedy told host Osama Kamal. Older legislation had been especially detrimental to SMEs, who had to go around to 11 offices and incur a lot of additional costs to obtain their licenses, Elsewedy said. The new law cuts down a lot of red tape and eliminates the middlemen involved in licensing procedures, making it infinitely easier to do business in the country.

Under the law, the Industrial Development Authority is obliged to inform applicants within a 14-day period if their request had been rejected, House Industry Committee chair MP Mohamed Samir said. These individuals would then be allowed to appeal a rejection through an IDA committee, he added (watch, runtime: 14:20).

Kamal also had an update on the national highway upgrade project, the first phase of which is now wrapping up. The state is earmarking some EGP 3.5 bn a year for the 3,400 km, EGP 36 bn project (watch, runtime 3:08).

Just say “No” to constitutional change: Meanwhile on Yahduth fi Misr, political commentator Mostafa El Fekki was back with Sherif Amer, talking about recent calls to amend the constitution and extend the presidential term to six years. El Fekki said that President Abdel Fattah El Sisi doesn’t appear “excited about the suggestion,” and that opening the door to constitutional changes so soon would only invite more of the same, “which is risky.”

Speed Round

Speed Round is presented in association with

The Finance Ministry is weighing raising up to USD 4 bn eurobond issuance in January, an official said, according to Bloomberg’s Mirette Magdy. “The ministry may approach investment banks to select advisers for the possible sale within three months. … The amount and the timing would depend on market conditions, the official said.” The official also noted that Egypt is expecting a financing gap of USD 10 bn in FY2017-18, much of which will be plugged by loans agreed to it international lenders including the IMF and World Bank. Finance Minister Amr El Garhy had told Reuters earlier this month that Egypt plans to issue USD 2-4 bn in eurobonds by 1Q2018. El Garhy had also said “the government plans to tap global debt markets again to capitalize on growing investor confidence after it floated its currency and cut costly energy subsidies.” Egypt raised USD 7 bn in FY2016-17 via eurobonds.

Ship lines get port fee break as gov’t looks to restore competitiveness: The Ismail government will be providing shipping companies with breaks on Suez Canal port fees as high as 50%. The reduced pricing will be proportionate to the volume of cargo shipped by the lines, Transport Minister Hisham Arafat and the Suez Canal Authority (SCA) head Mohab Mamish announced in a press conference on Wednesday, according to AMAY. The government has also apparently set a unified payment structure for port fees throughout the Suez Canal. The move is meant to win back shipping lines that left East Port Said port in March to protest a 150% hike in fees.

EARNINGS WATCH- Elsewedy Electric posted net profit after minority interest of EGP 3 bn for 1H2017 (up 84.6% y-o-y) on revenues of EGP 20.7 bn, the company said in its half-year earnings release yesterday (pdf). CEO Ahmed El Sewedy noted that the company nearly doubled its revenues “without any significant impact on our profitability margins and cemented our position as a leading provider of integrated energy solutions.” The company sees regional demand for its services at an “all-time high” driven by “population growth, increased pressure to develop adequate infrastructure and the growing desire to modernise the industrial and manufacturing sectors” Demand is broad-based, the company said, coming from the GCC, the wider Middle East and from African markets. In Egypt, El Sewedy said he sees an opportunity to “leverage our core wires and cables and turnkey competencies to extract higher value further up the chain” as the government continues its push to develop the power-generation market.

The wheat market has turned bearish as the prospect of another season of ample supply has sent prices plunging with “bigger-than-expected harvests in Russia and neighboring nations,” according to Bloomberg. “Money is flowing out of all the commodity markets … The spring wheat production number didn’t come down nearly as much as the bulls in the market would’ve liked,” said Joe Vaclavik, president of Standard Grain. This drop in international prices could be sparking interest of global buyers, including Egypt — the world’s largest importer. Tunisia, Philippines, Thailand, and Iraq are also said to be interested in issuing tenders to buy wheat. Egypt’s General Authority for Supply Commodities already contracted 355k tonnes of wheat from Russia and Ukraine yesterday that are scheduled for a 20-30 September delivery, Al Shorouk reports. The tender was issued on Tuesday.

Chambers of commerce to be allowed to invest as institutions: Prime Minister Sherif Ismail issued a resolution yesterday that allows chambers of commerce and their federations to establish new companies or invest in existing businesses in their institutional capacity, Al Mal reports. The directive would allow the groups to work within most fields and sectors, but limits a single chamber’s ownership stake in any business to 30%. This restriction on ownership is meant to avoid monopolistic practices, conflicts of interest, and antitrust issues. But apparently pseudo-governmental institutions competing with the private sector will be seen as just fine.

Also yesterday, the prime minister issued a decree establishing the General Authority for the Golden Triangle area, Al Masry Al Youm says. The decree transfers ownership of all state-controlled assets in the area to the newly-established body. President Abdel Fattah El Sisi had signed off on the creation of the special economic zone last month.

Iraq has formed a new joint venture “with a shipping company owned by Arab states to transfer, store and trade crude and oil products,” Reuters reports. The new company is called Al-Iraqia Shipping Services and Oil Trading (AISSOT), and it will handle a “plethora of activities ranging from trading of petroleum products, ship chartering, oil terminals, various marine services, and bunkering.” AISSOT is owned by state firm Iraqi Oil Tankers Co. (IOTC), which owns 22.5% of its shares, and Arab Maritime Petroleum Transport Co (AMPTC). AMPTC was established in 1973 with Saudi Arabia owning 15.595% of its shares and with stakes owned by Kuwait, UAE, Qatar, Iraq, and Egypt among other Arab countries. “The new venture will have exclusive rights for transportation of crude and refined products. It will develop other projects include trading starting with fuel oil and products and can eventually get into crude oil allocations,” an industry source told Reuters. AISSOT will be based in Dubai with plans to open offices in Singapore and other hubs, the report adds.

US takes a tough stance on NAFTA negotiations: Talks over the North American Freetrade Agreement (NAFTA) started on Wednesday, with the US strident in its demands that the “unfair” agreement needs “major improvement.” With NAFTA being one of the rallying points of US President Donald Trump’s campaign, US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer struck a belligerent tone yesterday, saying, “For countless Americans, this agreement has failed. We cannot ignore the huge trade deficits, the lost manufacturing jobs, the businesses that have closed or moved because of incentives . . . in the current agreement.” Canada and Mexico are angling to keep the agreement intact, with Canadian foreign minister Chrystia Freeland warning that Canada is “the biggest client of the United States. Canada buys more from the US than China, the UK and Japan combined.” Reuters and the Financial Times have the story.

Also in Amreeka yesterday, The Donald disbanded two business advisory councils after multiple CEOs resigned in protest of the US president’s remarks equating white supremacist and left-wing protesters, Bloomberg says. Trump announced in a tweet that he was disbanding the councils. “President Trump found himself increasingly isolated in a racial crisis of his own making on Wednesday, abandoned by the nation’s top business executives, contradicted by military leaders and shunned by Republicans outraged by his defense of white nationalist protesters in Charlottesville, Va.,” the New York Times noted.


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The Macro Picture

The Middle East is traditionally synonymous with oil and natural gas, but old perceptions may no longer hold true with the region going through an economic slump that is slowing everything down and forcing diversification away from the fossil fuel industry as a crutch. Bloomberg contributor Robin Mills argues that even though traditionally gas rich countries, including Egypt, have turned into importers in the last few years, Middle Eastern demand will be curbed “on three fronts: economics, efficiency, and competition.” Rising costs during the oil price slump has most governments weaning their populations off subsidies and looking for more energy efficient means for power. While gas powered grids are already in place, future expansion is looking toward other means, namely renewable energy in our solar-rich desertscapes.

The International Energy Agency (IEA), however, still forecasts growth in the natural gas sector, seeing it growing by 1.6% per annum through 2022. While Mills’ argument for renewables holds water, population growth is exploding in countries including Egypt, and economic slumps are always going to be cyclical. The political aspect can’t be denied, either. With the Eastern Mediterranean witnessing a gas exploration boom, we can expect allied blocs such as Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and Israel to push investment in a direction that takes advantage of new resource discoveries.

China clamps down on outbound M&A — with the exception of Belt and Road: M&A appetite from Chinese companies in nations that are part of China’s Belt and Road initiative appear to have been spared restrictions on outbound capital by the Chinese government. Chinese acquisitions in the 68 countries, which includes Egypt, totaled USD 33 bn as of Monday, surpassing the USD 31 bn tally for all of 2016, according to Thomson Reuters data. On the flipside, outbound M&A from China has dropped 42% y-o-y as Monday. While Beijing has been curbing outbound and leveraged acquisition to prop up the Yuan, but as the USD 124 bn Belt and Road initiative is a key foreign trade policy of President Xi Jinping, the trend will likely continue. “The acquisitions are also policy-driven. There are funds allocated by Chinese banks and state funds for Belt and Road deals,” said Hilary Lau, a corporate and commercial lawyer and partner at the law firm Herbert Smith Freehills.

Egypt in the News

It’s another really slow morning for Egypt in the international press, with coverage dominated by pickups of wire copy on newly discovered tombs.

Are we getting dragged to the tussle between the US and North Korea? It is time for the “merry-go-round” with sanctions on North Korea to end, Jamie Fly and Anthony Ruggiero write for Fox News. For the sanctions to work this time around, they say, the involvement of China, as well as US partners, in imposing the sanctions needs to be ensured. Besides stressing the need to coax China into participating effectively, they point out Singapore and Egypt in particular, saying: “For example, Singapore, a key U.S. ally, serves as a conduit for luxury goods to North Korea that helps North Korean leader Kim Jong Un remain in power. Even countries like Egypt have been urged by the Trump administration to cut off their dealings with the Kim regime as Cairo was a customer for North Korean missiles. America’s allies need to choose: do business with the United States or business with North Korea. You can’t do both.”

Also worth noting in brief this morning:

  • Social entrepreneurship. Impact investing. Accelerators. Social and economic fallout of Arab Spring. They should be labelled with “trigger warnings” for us, but if they don’t threaten to send you into paroxysms of rage, go read this piece in the UAE’s The National.
  • An audio recording of a university professor harassing a female student recently went viral, highlighting the endemic problem of [redacted] harassment in campuses across the country,reports Al-Monitor.
  • An Egyptian American Football team “the Pink Warriors” is challenging stereotypes on women and higabi athletes (barring the [redacted]-ist name, obviously), says My Salaam.
  • The UK press is in an uproar over a seven-year old British girl who received a chemical burn from a henna tattoo she got in Hurghada.
  • South Korean residents celebrated the 72nd anniversary of Korea’s liberation in Cairo, according to Korea’s Yonhap News Agency.

On Deadline

We have our very own wannabe Bernie Sanders: Government initiatives to support private sector companies are tantamount to the government subsidizing private corporations at the expense of the middle class, writes Mohamed El Hawary for Al Borsa. He cites initiatives including the Contractors’ Compensation Act and the central bank settling LC debt spikes incurred following the EGP float as examples of this subsidizing of corporations. El Hawary is not altogether opposed to helping companies hit by hard times (even citing the bailouts in the US in 2008). But he believes the government has taken it too far and has gotten private companies used to getting handouts from the state.

Worth Watching

The Giza pyramids saw “dust storms and ancient plagues…[and] thanks to Cedric Dumont, a skydive.” The Wingsuiter Dumont is seen flying over the pyramids in this video from an energy drink company (watch, runtime 1:10).

Diplomacy + Foreign Trade

Trade and Industry Minister Tarek Kabil signed a trade cooperation agreement with his Gabonese counterpart on Wednesday, according to Al Masry Al Youm. The agreement will establish a joint trade committee to help boost both countries’ economic relations. Kabil also said that the two sides are studying the possibility of setting up a lumber plant in Gabon with Egyptian investments. The agreement came during President Abdel Fattah El Sisi’s visit to Gabon as part of his Africa tour, which takes him to Chad today.

El Sisi’s talks with Gabon’s President Ali Bongo yesterday had centered around cooperation and increasing mutual investments, especially in the health sector, an Ittihadiya statement said (pdf). African and regional security, as well as environmental issues were also on the agenda. El Sisi also invited President Bongo to attend the upcoming Youth Conference in Cairo and the Africa 2017 forum set to take place in Sharm El Sheikh in December.

Italian gov’t denies the US had provided intelligence on the alleged involvement of Egyptian officials in Regeni’s murder: The Italian government denied the Obama administration had given it explosive evidence or actionable information on the involvement of Egyptian security officials in the murder of Giulio Regeni, ANSAamed reports. The New York Times’ Declan Walsh had said the US, under Obama, acquired evidence that Regeni was abducted, tortured, and killed by the Egyptian secret services in early 2016. The administration had then informed Rome, then under the Renzi administration. Italy had decided to send its ambassador back to Cairo earlier this week, prompting criticism from Regeni’s family.

Discussions with Ethiopia regarding the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam “are always done with Egyptian participation,” said Sudan’s Foreign Minister Ibrahim Ghandour, according to Sudan Tribune. “The issue of water has been always present when two of the three parties meet but the concern is always ‘how to have tripartite cooperation between the three countries,’ he further stressed.” The paper says “Sudan backs the project because its water will be used to develop the eastern Sudan region, while Ethiopia says it intends to produce only electricity and has no interest in the water or any intention to harm Egypt.”

Agriculture Minister Abdel Moneim El Banna is in Warsaw to discuss cooperationon food manufacturing and agricultural development in Egypt, Al Mal reports. El Banna met with Polish counterpart ‎Krzysztof Jurgiel and is set to treat with a number of other officials and representatives from agricultural research centers.

Egypt opened the Rafah border crossing with the Gaza Strip in both directions for two days on Wednesday, for the first time in six months, Ahram Online reports.


EGAS approves import licenses for three private companies

EGAS approved natural gas import licenses on Wednesday for the three private companies Fleet, BB Energy, and Qalaa Holding’s TAQA Arabia, sources familiar with the matter tell Al Borsa. EGAS had given the three companies preliminary approval last year, pending the issuance of the Natural Gas Act, which effectively deregulates the market and opens it for competition. The act was signed into law by President Abdel Fattah El Sisi last week. Five companies had bid to import natural gas privately, including Alaa Arafa’s Dolphinus Holdings — rumored to have been in talks to import gas from Israel’s Tamar gas field — and TAQA Arabia. We noted on Tuesday that Logic Management Consulting was tapped to advise on setting up the natural gas market regulator that will manage private sector players’ access to the market.

Al Ahly Capital, Zulficar & Partners submit offer for financial, legal advisor on FiT

Al Ahly Capital and Zulficar & Partners have formed a partnership to act as legal and financial advisors to the Electricity Ministry on agreements and contracts for the second phase of the feed-in tariff (FiT) program, Al Mal reports. While the ministry had not issued a tender or requested advisors for signing FiT contracts, the consortium presented the offer after spotting a the ministry’s need for it as it moves to sign power purchase agreements, Al Ahly Capital Managing Director Khaled Badawi says. Separately, Al Ahly Capital submitted an offer to Al-Wadi for Phosphate Industries and Fertilizers Company to act as financial advisor on a facility to finance its USD 900 mn phosphoric acid and fertilizers manufacturing project, Badawi adds.

Basic Materials + Commodities

Demand for Egyptian sweet potatoes in Europe booming

Demand for Egyptian sweet potatoes in the Netherlands is starting to boom, importer Fresh-Agro tells Fresh Plaza. “We currently have the Beauregard variety available. At the start of the season demand was still quite calm, because of the holidays, but demand is now really starting to erupt,” Fresh-Agro says.

Lafarge enters negotiations with Mondi to sell plastic bags unit

Packaging group Mondi has entered negotiations with Lafarge to acquire one of its bag-making subsidiaries, according to Al Borsa. We had previously mentioned that Lafarge was looking to offload one of its plastic bag manufacturers — EGY SAK and the National Bag Company — and had received offers of interest from a Libyan investor and Mondi.

Health + Education

Gov’t considers new policies governing the pharma sector

Prime Minister Sherif Ismail discussed developing new policies for the pharma industry and meds manufacturing with the ministers of health and public enterprises on Wednesday, according to a cabinet statement. While nothing concrete came out of the meeting, it does signal some legislative and policy changes maybe in the works for the pharma sector.

Education Ministry to move part of their testing online to save up on printing costs

The Education Ministry is looking to cut down its costs by saving up on printing and taking workbooks and practice tests digital, according to a statement from the ministry. A number of different textbooks will be merged to also cut down on costs and color printing will become a thing of the past for state-issued text books.

Banking + Finance

MNHD begins procedures to launch GDR program

Madinet Nasr Housing & Development sought out the approval of the Egyptian Financial Supervisory Authority (EFSA) and the EGX to convert a number of its shares to global depository receipts (GDR), according to an EGX filing. CI Capital will act as the exclusive advisor on the transaction. GDRs cannot exceed 33% of total capital or the percentage of shares on free float, as per EFSA rules.

Saudi Binladin Group’s Al Marasem signs EGP 900 mn facility with banking consortium

Saudi Binladin Group subsidiary Al Marasem International for Development signed contracts for a EGP 900 mn loan with a consortium of banks to finance development of its 5th Square compound. The consortium includes Banque Misr, Al Baraka Bank, and Industrial Development & Workers Bank Of Egypt, Al Mal reports. The transaction was arranged by ADIB Capital and Banque Misr.

Okasha, El Etreby expected to remain heads of NBE, Banque Misr

National Bank of Egypt head Hisham Okasha and Banque Misr Chairman Mohamed El Etreby are expected to remain in their posts for another three-year term, sources tell AMAY. A management shakeup at state-owned banks is expected next month, as terms for chairmen end on 25 September.

Banking system received USD 41 bn since EGP float

The banking system has collected USD 41 bn since the EGP float last November, Ahram Gate reports, citing an unnamed source from the central bank.

Other Business News of Note

Investment Ministry forming FDI advisory council

Talks to form the Foreign Investment Council have reportedly begun between business figures and Investment Minister Sahar Nasr, sources tell Al Mal. Nasr had announced the formation of the advisory council at a meeting with top officials at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development in London on Tuesday. The council will serve as a platform for dialogue between the government and major investment companies to settle any disputes and discuss challenges facing foreign direct investments in Egypt.

Egypt Politics + Economics

Warraq residents form committee to negotiate terms with the state

Residents of the South Cairo island of Warraq are forming a committee from within their ranks to negotiate with the state on their behalf, after they refused a relocation settlement, Al Masry Al Youm reports. Authorities, who claim the island is illegally occupied, had offered to compensate inhabitants with new properties if they choose to leave the area, where clashes with security forces as they attempted to clear it last month killed one.

National Security

Bright Star strengthens military relationships -US CENTCOM

The US-Egyptian joint military exercises Bright Star 2017, which starts next month, “strengthens military-to-military relationships between US forces and our Egyptian partners,” US Central Command spokesman Josh Jacques told CNN. “The exercise enhances regional security and stability by responding to modern-day security scenarios,” he adds. 2017 will be the first year the US partakes in the joint military exercises since former President Hosni Mubarak was toppled and the scheduled exercises for 2012 were cancelled. Former US President Barack Obama’s administration also cancelled the exercise in 2014 over allegations of human rights abuses by the Egyptian government. Bright Star 2017 is a bilateral “command-post exercise, field training exercise and senior leader seminar” held with Egypt, Jacques says.

On Your Way Out

Were 33,000 ancient artifacts really looted from Egypt? Reports had emerged in the foreign press and social media citing statements from the Antiquities Ministry that around 33,000 ancient artifacts had been looted from Egypt in the past half century. However, the ministry came out yesterday to deny that it had issued any such statement, according to Egypt Independent. The Head of the Central Museums’ Stores Authority, Saied Shebal told the state-run newspaper Al Ahram that the unverified statement was inaccurate and that there will be an official response from the Central Museums’ Stores Authority.

The Market Yesterday

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EGP / USD CBE market average: Buy 17.7182 | Sell 17.8182
EGP / USD at CIB: Buy 17.72 | Sell 17.82
EGP / USD at NBE: Buy 17.73 | Sell 17.83

EGX30 (Wednesday): 13,149.19 (+0.36%)
Turnover: EGP 594.7 mn (35% below the 90-day average)
EGX 30 year-to-date: +6.52%

THE MARKET ON WEDNESDAY: The EGX30 closed yesterday up 0.4%. CIB, the index’s heaviest constituent, ended almost flat. The index’s top-performing constituents were Elsewedy Electric (+5.8%), Telecom Egypt (+1.4%), and EFG Hermes (+1.3%). The day’s worst-performing shares were Porto Group (-2.4% down), Arabian Cement (-1.4%), and Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (-1.3%). Market turnover was EGP 595 mn, with foreign investors the sole net sellers.

Foreigners: Net short | EGP -21.1 mn
Regional: Net long | EGP +13.1mn
Domestic: Net long | EGP +8.0 mn

Retail: 52.2% of total trades | 51.9% of buyers | 52.5% of sellers
Institutions: 47.8% of total trades | 48.1% of buyers | 47.5% of sellers

Foreign: 32.9% of total | 31.2% of buyers | 34.5% of sellers
Regional: 8.0% of total | 9.0% of buyers | 7.0% of sellers
Domestic: 59.1% of total | 59.8% of buyers | 58.5% of sellers

WTI: USD 46.88 (-0.21%)
Brent: USD 50.45 (+0.36%)
Natural Gas (Nymex, futures prices) USD 2.89 MMBtu, (+0.14%, September 2017 contract)
Gold: USD 1,293.50 / troy ounce (+0.83%)

TASI: 7,128.35 (+0.35%) (YTD: -1.14%)
ADX: 4,497.34 (+0.59%) (YTD: -1.08%)
DFM: 3,589.30 (+0.27%) (YTD: +1.65%)
KSE Weighted Index: 424.18 (-0.08%) (YTD:+11.60%)
QE: 9,022.25 (-1.23%) (YTD: -13.55%)
MSM: 4,912.57 (-0.53%) (YTD: -15.05%)
BB: 1,310.98 (+0.06%%) (YTD: +7.42%)

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17 August (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee to review policy rates.

31 August-04 September (Thursday-Monday): Eid Al-Adha, national holiday (TBC) as specified by the Astronomical and Geophysics Institute. The Thursday is the waqfat Arafat, with the first day of the Eid on Friday, 1 September.

September — The House of Representatives is due to begin discussion of the proposed bankruptcy bill.

06 September (Wednesday): The Emirates NBD Egypt PMI report for August released.

06-09 September (Wednesday-Saturday): 2017 China-Arab States Expo (Egypt is the Guest of Honor), Ningxia, China.

08-09 September (Friday-Saturday): Educate Me’s Conference for Egyptian Education (Mo’allem), AUC, Cairo

13 September (Wednesday): EIB MED Conference: Boosting investments in the Mediterranean Region, Cairo.

13-15 September (Wednesday-Friday) Financial Inclusion Conference in Sharm El Sheikh.

18-19 September (Monday-Tuesday): Euromoney Egypt conference, venue TBD, Cairo.

19 September (Tuesday): Deadline for applications for funding under the Newton Institutional Links programme.

20-23 September (Wednesday-Saturday): 2017 Automech Formula car expo, Cairo International Convention Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

22 September (Friday): Islamic New Year, national holiday (TBC).

22-24 September (Friday-Sunday): CairoComix Festival, AUC Tahrir Campus, Cairo.

25-27 September (Monday-Wednesday): Egypt Downstream Summit and Exhibition, Kempinski Royal Maxim Palace, Cairo.

23-25 September (Saturday-Monday): Invest In Africa Conference and Exhibitors Summit, Gala Theater Complex, Cairo.

28 September (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee to review policy rates.

03-05 October (Tuesday-Thursday): J.P. Morgan’s Credit and Equities Emerging Markets Conference, London, UK.

06 October (Friday): Armed Forces Day, national holiday.

11-12 October (Wednesday-Thursday): 2030 Mega Projects Conference, Nefertiti Hall, Cairo International Convention Center, Cairo.

11-13 October (Wednesday-Friday): Middle East and Africa Rail Show, Cairo International Convention Center, Cairo.

18-19 October (Wednesday-Thursday): Middle East Info Security Summit, Sofitel El Gezirah, Cairo.

18-20 October (Wednesday-Friday): AfriLabs annual gathering with the theme “Smart Cities,” The French University, Cairo. Register here.

23-27 October (Monday-Friday): 29th Business and Professional Women International Congress themed “Making a Difference through Leadership and Action,” Mena House Hotel, Cairo. Register here.

06-07 November (Monday-Tuesday): Crisis Communications Conference, Four Seasons Nile Plaza Hotel, Cairo.

16 November (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee to review policy rates.

26-29 November (Sunday-Wednesday): 21st Cairo ICT, Cairo International Convention Center, Nasr City, Cairo.

01 December (Friday): Prophet’s Birthday, national holiday.

03-05 December (Sunday-Tuesday): Solar-Tec, Cairo International Exhibition & Convention Centre.

03-05 December (Sunday-Tuesday): Electrix, Cairo International Exhibition & Convention Centre.

07-09 December (Thursday-Saturday): The Africa 2017 forum: “Business for Africa, Egypt and the World” Conference, Sharm El Sheikh.

08-10 December (Friday-Sunday): RiseUp Summit, Downtown Cairo.

28 December (Thursday): Central Bank of Egypt’s Monetary Policy Committee to review policy rates.

17-21 February 2018 (Wednesday-Saturday): Women For Success – Women SME’s "World of Possibilities" Conference, Cairo/Luxor.

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