The central banker’s job today is certainly difficult. But it had better not be impossible.
MARKET REPORT | ISLAMIC TRADE FINANCE
Offering inventory financing to commodity traders brings much-needed liquidity to the Islamic trade finance market.
Global Finance presents its annual report on the performance of the world’s central bank governors.
FRONTIER MARKETS REPORT | KAZAKHSTAN
Kazakhstan is rife with investment opportunities, but companies must be aware of the country’s regional commitments and business climate.
Global Finance sat down with Russell Golden, chairman of the Financial Accounting Standards Board, to discuss the current activities of the FASB—including its recently issued standard on revenue recognition, a joint effort with the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB).
Africa Supplement 2014
AFRICA 2014 | INTRODUCTION
Though Africa has experienced impressive growth for well over a decade now, domestic markets and intraregional economic relations have remained constrained, with national economies driven primarily by mounting foreign demand for the continent’s natural resources and commodity exports.Today, however, things appear to be changing. For one thing, Africa is witnessing the emergence of a middle class.
AFRICA 2014 | INTRA-AFRICA TRADE
The rise of the African consumer market is providing an opportunity for domestic companies to increase their footprint across the region.
AFRICA 2014 | UNITY
Africa’s dream of greater economic unity is gradually becoming a reality, with plans to establish a free-trade area spanning eastern and southern African countries well under way. Yet it could take time for the associated economic and trading benefits to play out.
AFRICA 2014 | MINING
Africa’s mining industry is on the verge of breaching limits historically imposed by political risk constraints.
AFRICA 2014 | INFRASTRUCTURE
From power plants and mining to tourism and railroads, new infrastructure projects are stimulating the growth of industries across sub-Saharan Africa.
COUNTRY REPORT | TURKEY: BANKING
Turkey’s president is not a fan of them, and an increasing tide of regulation and a growing debt profile make for a difficult operating environment for Turkish banks.
COUNTRY REPORT | TURKEY: OVERVIEW
Recent presidential elections saw political continuity and investor appetite maintained in Turkey, but high levels of indebtedness and political divisions cause some concern.
MILESTONES | GLOBAL
World Bank Group president Jim Yong Kim announced the launch of a Global Infrastructure Facility during the World Bank–IMF fall meeting in Washington, DC, in October.
MILESTONES | UNITED KINGDOM
Technology derived from medical scanning is being used by a UK bank in the fight against cybercrime and identity fraud.
MILESTONES | CHINA
China Huarong Asset Management, a bad bank set up during the credit bust of the 1990s, has turned out to be the mystery investor that bailed out shadow-banking product Credit Equals Gold No. 1.
MILESTONES | TANZANIA
Plans by Tanzania’s Capital Markets and Securities Authority to dispense with the 60% foreign ownership limit in stocks listed on the Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange could bring positive results in the short and medium term for Africa’s capital markets.
MILESTONES | LATIN AMERICA
In Latin America, the outlook for private equity and venture capital remains bright. Despite a 10% fall in investments during the first half of 2014, local and global players increased the amount of funds raised.
CAPITAL MARKETS | FOREIGN EXCHANGE
As the Federal Reserve winds down its bond-buying program and prepares to raise rates, analysts are debating the likelihood of a repeat of last year’s “taper tantrum”—when the mere hint of a gradual end to quantitative easing in the US caused huge disruptions to emerging markets (EMs).
CAPITAL MARKETS | Q&A
Julie Dickson is equity portfolio manager at emerging-markets investment manager Ashmore.
CAPITAL MARKETS | ISLAMIC FINANCE
To diversify its sources of financing, Goldman Sachs plans to issue a benchmark Islamic bond, at a time when demand for sukuk is outrunning supply. Meanwhile, South Africa is planning its first sovereign sukuk, and the Egyptian government is working on a new sukuk law, following the military’s overthrow of Islamist president Mohamed Morsi last year.
TRENDS | SRI LANKA
Hiran Embuldeniya, managing director at York Street Partners, an investment bank in Colombo, Sri Lanka, says there are plenty of opportunities for the firm to do business in the country as it rapidly develops in the wake of a 30-year civil war that ended in 2009.
MANAGEMENT | TAX PLANNING
When Congress returns following the November elections, the issue of what to do about US companies making foreign acquisitions to relocate overseas and save on taxes will be high on the agenda.
CAPITAL MARKETS | AFRICAN EQUITY
Initial public offerings on the Nairobi Securities Exchange have been few and far between in recent years.
MANAGEMENT | DERIVATIVES REGULATION
Nonfinancial corporations that hedge risk by using derivatives not traded on exchanges won an important victory in early September, when US bank regulators agreed to exempt such companies from rules that would have required them to post collateral against their positions.
TRENDS | RENMINBI TRADING
Even though Toronto is the center of Canada’s financial industry, much of the country’s trade with China passes through Vancouver. Groups in both cities have decided to work together to promote Canada as a trading hub for the renminbi.
NEWSMAKERS | POLAND
Tony Elumelu, former managing director and CEO of United Bank for Africa, returned to the bank in late August as chairman, following his appointment by the shareholders.
NEWSMAKERS | SPAIN
Less than 24 hours after the sudden death, in September, of her father Emilio Botín, widely recognized as one of the shrewdest, most successful bankers in modern history, Ana Patricia Botín was unanimously named by the board to take the helm of Banco Santander, an institution that has been under the control of her family for three generations.
NEWSMAKERS | POLAND
The crop-haired, bespectacled 58-year-old is barely known outside Poland. Even within, most people know Kopacz, a former doctor and Health minister more for her loyalty to Tusk than for anything else.
NEWSMAKERS | UNITED STATES
The technology community has warmly welcomed the appointment of Megan Smith as the next chief technology officer of the US.
NEWSMAKERS | PAKISTAN
After an eventful career as an international cricket star, Imran Khan Niazi embraced politics in Pakistan 17 years ago, an environment dominated by religious and fervent groups. Gaining prominence when his party, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI), captured 7.7 million votes in last May’s elections to become the third-largest faction in parliament...
NEWSMAKERS | UNITED KINGDOM
From Washington to Madrid, there was a collective sigh of relief breathed around Western capitals when Scottish voters decided by a majority of 55% to reject the call for independence and remain part of the United Kingdom. For all those who did not want Scotland to secede, an unlikely hero had emerged in the form of Gordon Brown.
Sponsored Statement | Infosys Strategic Vision
Technology continues to evolve by the hour. The exponential usage of smartphones and tablets is deeply influencing consumer behavior and preferences. Now, consumers prefer most of their banking services to be “One Click Away – on-the-go! To tap this changing market scenario, banks have shifted their focus from branch models to virtual platforms