The Month That Was - Oil rally lifts the regional markets

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For the GCC markets, the year started on a good note with oil prices rebounding by 3.3% to close above USD 69/bbl. S&P GCC Composite Index gained .....

Summary

For the GCC markets, the year started on a good note with oil prices rebounding by 3.3% to close above USD 69/bbl. S&P GCC Composite Index gained by 1.5% during January 2018, in-line with most of the GCC markets which closed on a positive note. Qatar was the best performing market in January 2018 (8%) followed by Saudi Arabia at 5.9%. Being the year beginning, this is also the “budget” season.

Kuwait announced its budget for the fiscal year 2018-2019, projecting an estimated deficit of USD 16.7bn or 13.5% of the GDP, before the transfer of 10% of revenues to Kuwait's sovereign wealth fund. However, Kuwait is going steady on its path to fiscal reform and hence the total expenditure has been capped at only 0.5% higher from last year’s expenditure.

Oman too like most of its other regional peers has opted to boost its capital spending in its budget for 2018. However, this comes at the cost of running significant fiscal deficit of approximately USD 7.8bn or 10% of GDP. Revenues for the year 2018 are projected at USD 24.7bn which is a c. 9% increase from USD 22.6bn in the 2017 budget.

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The Month That Was - Oil rally lifts the regional markets

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