What we’re tracking on 15 October 2017
We’re riding a runaway freight train this morning after a very slow news week last week, so get ready to read, ladies and gentlemen.
The nationwide state of emergency was extended for three months as of last Friday, according to the Official Gazette. Reuters notes that “Egypt first imposed the state of emergency in April after two church bombings killed at least 45 people. It was then extended in July for a further three months.” The new declaration to extend the state of emergency should be approved by parliament within seven days, according to the Associated Press.
Lagarde warns on capital market volatility, trade protectionism and tech: IMF boss Christine Lagarde started bringing the annual meetings of the IMF and World Bank to a close with a warning that the recovery of the global economy “isn’t complete” and could be set back by trade protectionism (of the type being promoted by The Donald) and volatility in capital markets. Lagarde also warned that "I think that we are about to see massive disruptions” thanks to fintech and said it’s too simplistic to dismiss cryptocurrencies as vehicles for fraud. That last bit came as BlackRock boss Larry Fink joined JPMorgan Chase chief Jamie Dimon in saying that world governments will join together to strangle cryptocurrencies, which they argued benefit only criminals.
As a financial market, we rank behind Nigeria, Rwanda and Ivory Coast, according to the geniuses at Barclays. That’s right, folks: The inaugural Barclays Africa Group Financial Markets Index gives Egypt a score of 39, noting our “problems from international reporting standards and contract enforcement,” against Nigeria’s 51, which it notes is a “large economy with good prospects but improvements in transparency needed,” according to the Financial Times. The press release announcing the index (which includes its ranking criteria) is here, or you can go here and register to download the report.
A new petition backing President Abdel Fattah El Sisi in the 2018 presidential race has been gaining a lot of traction, both publicly and on social media, according to Youm7. The campaign ‘Ashan Nebniha (So We Can Build it) has been especially popular among house representatives and celebrities, many of whom have already signed the petition, including MP Mohamed Abu Hamed, as well as Actors Syndicate head Ashraf Zaki, and actors Hussein Fahmy, Sawsan Badr, and Hassan Youssef. The official Facebook page for the campaign is here. El Sisi has yet to declare his candidacy.
Egyptians become first husband and wife combo to win US Squash Open. Both the men’s and women’s finals last night were all-Egyptian affairs that saw “Ali Farag and Nour El Tayeb both upset the seedings in the finals of the 2017 U.S. Open to become the first married couple to win World Series titles — or any major sporting title — together on the same day,” USopensquash.com reports.
EU, US regulators reach compromise on Mifid II: EU and US regulators reached on Friday an agreement that should see global rules for derivatives harmonized, allaying concerns from the financial sectors on conflicting regulations once the EU implements new Mifid II regulations, the Financial Times reports. The two-part agreement will allow US and EU financial groups to trade on each other’s platforms, which they would have been unable to do under Mifid II. Still no word on how the two plan to handle the unbundling of research and trading.
The final trailer for season two of Stranger Things is out, and it’s fantastic, whether you’re a rabid fan of the show (as many of us here are) or whether you’re simply into the 1980s. Watch it here (runtime: 2:48). All episodes drop on Friday, 27 October.