Stocks and oil rallied on Monday on bargain buying after last week’s blowout, with traders riding a wave of optimism following Wall Street’s gains ahead of the weekend.

“Markets are entering the new week with some renewed optimism, having finished the previous week’s tumultuous drive on a positive note,” said Richard Hunter, analyst with Interactive Investor.

The positive start was reflected in the oil markets, with both major contracts making big gains and having suffered heavy losses recently amid fears that the delta-spread variant would hurt demand as countries restrict people’s freedom of movement .

Fears over the Covid mutation have rocked world markets as it is forcing some governments to reintroduce containment measures, while sentiment was further shaken last week by minutes of the Fed’s July meeting, which indicated they would end by the end of the year could withdraw their extensive financial support.

The focus is now on Fed chief Jerome Powell’s speech at the annual conference of central bankers and finance chiefs in Jackson Hole in hopes of some hint of a timetable for the reduction.
In light of the global march of the Delta variant showing signs of slowing economic growth, reconsider its view in order to rejuvenate soon.

Majid Al Futtaim, the shopping malls, community, retail and leisure group with a presence in the Middle East, Africa and Central Asia, felt the effects of the pandemic as revenues fell 10 percent to AED 15.6 billion, according to its financial reports Results for the first six months of the year.

The group said it had remained resilient despite the ongoing impact of the pandemic on its operating environment and focused on adapting to customer needs a marginal increase. According to the group, this is primarily due to the relative stabilization of the market, which has led to stable asset valuations.

Alain Bejjani, Chief Executive Officer of Majid Al Futtaim – Holding, said: “Despite the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, Majid Al Futtaim delivered a robust performance in the first half of the year, supported by prudent financial management and a diversified portfolio.” / p>
He added that the company’s strong financial position enabled him to withstand this pressure and respond flexibly to the situation.

As the pandemic subsides in key markets around the world, Bejjani said confidence has returned in recent months and pre-pandemic activities are resuming.

“We saw encouraging signs of recovery in our markets in the first half of the year as consumers gain confidence. In addition to the increased activity in our physical assets, the acceleration of pre-pandemic trends – especially in terms of digital capabilities – is picking up pace, ”Bejjani added.

The group added that investment in sustainable growth opportunities would continue, saying it was on track to meet both its pledge to be net positive in water and energy by 2040 and its pledge to be in all operations by 2025 Letting out single-use plastic.

SHANGHAI: According to official information from the exchange, Chinese stock exchanges have stopped more than 40 initial public offerings (IPOs) in Shanghai and Shenzhen as part of an official investigation of several intermediaries in the business.
The Shenzhen Stock Exchange suspended more than 30 initial public offerings, including public share sale plans of BYD Co.’s chip unit, on Aug. 18, according to stock exchange filings. The Shanghai Stock Exchange has paused eight IPOs targeting the city’s technology-centric STAR market since Aug. 19.
The companies attribute the stop of the IPOs to an investigation by the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) into intermediaries, including the Beijing-based Tian Yuan Law Firm, China Dragon Securities Co. and CAREA Assets Appraisal Co.
The news was first reported by Chinese media.
Tighter scrutiny of IPOs comes as Beijing launches a spate of regulatory crackdowns on sectors ranging from the internet to tutoring.
On Monday, China said it would tighten controls on accounting firms in the fight against financial counterfeiting and promised “zero tolerance” for wrongdoing.

New research shows that Saudi’s switch to online shopping has increased significantly as around 95% of customers in the UK have switched to online shopping since the beginning of the pandemic.

Across the Middle East, the pandemic hit e-commerce across the region with a 54% year-over-year growth to 12.1 billion, of which electronics and retail accounted for over 42 percent.

In a warning to brands and vendors to ensure a smooth and efficient online experience, the survey showed that the overwhelming majority of Saudi users would stop using a website or move away if the experience was poor.

YouGov MENA’s study of IT decision-makers in 12 GCC countries found that 90% would choose an alternate website if the experience was poor, and another 89% showed that their customers were less patient with slow or malfunctioning websites . .

“With 95 percent of Saudi Arabia’s customers digitally switching to e-commerce, the country is experiencing a rapid transition from brick-and-mortar stores to hybrid and e-commerce models,” said Mohammed Alkhotani, Area Vice President – Middle East and Africa , Sitecore. “Millennials and Generation Z customers are rapidly shifting their considerable purchasing power online. The pressure on retailers will continue to mount until they can deliver an experience that is compelling.”

He added that brand loyalty is a thing of the past and customers are more focused on how good their online experience is likely to be.

The majority of respondents, 55 percent, rated an online app or website that works well on mobile devices as one of their top three options.

Brands that remember customers’ purchasing history and preferences (37 percent) also scored high among the top three options Service.

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia has maintained its position as the leading force behind the growth of the Middle East’s sports industry, according to a report by the US-Saudi Business Council.
The contribution of sport to Saudi Arabia’s gross domestic product increased from 2.4 billion-thirds of the population under 35, along with the 2030 vision of developing sport as a major non-oil industry.
According to the Kingdom’s Ministry of Sports, this number is expected to rise to SR 18 billion by 2030.
The latest figures, released in 2020 before the pandemic, showed that the participation of Saudi citizens in sports increased from 13 percent to 20 percent after the quality of life program launched, according to the General Authority for Statistics (GAStat).
By investing in sports facilities, expanding sports education and training for women and children and strengthening Saudi Arabia’s national profile as a sports destination, the government wants to increase this to 40 percent by 2030.
Saudi Vision 2030 has opened up new opportunities in the sports industry for local and international companies as part of an effort to encourage Saudi participation by young people in sports, leveraging the private sector to fill infrastructure and knowledge gaps, and building a national reputation as a sports leader to pursue.
The Kingdom currently has major sports projects, planned or under construction, worth SR 11 billion. These include mega-projects such as NEOM, Qiddiya, AMAALA, AlUla and the Riyadh City project, as well as community projects such as a new car park in King Abdullah Economic City and the construction of new leisure and university fitness facilities.
These projects engage a number of companies including local construction firms, international design and consulting firms, international EPC firms and leading sports organizations with specific expertise.
“Most of the economic benefits will go to Saudi companies, which do most of the sport-related business in the Kingdom. This includes construction, facility management and project logistics. However, foreign companies and associations are actively working with Saudi companies to improve certain areas of sport, “said Albara’a Alwazir, director of economic research at the US-Saudi Business Council.
“Saudi Arabia’s mega-project pipeline will continue to offer numerous projects and employment opportunities for sports infrastructure. As talent identification and development programs become more established, the demand for sporting goods, facilities and international investments will increase. Large construction projects such as Qiddiya and the Riad Sports Boulevard are expected to create tens of thousands of jobs during construction and also offer Saudi nationals permanent employment opportunities in the sports and tourism sectors. ”
Women’s sports in particular represent a significant economic opportunity for local and international companies to address a growing and underdeveloped market segment. The Ministry of Sport estimates that female participation in sport has increased by almost 150 percent over the past five years. According to a 2019 GAStat survey, 10 percent of men who did not exercise cited lack of facilities as the reason, compared with 25 percent of women, highlighting a market opportunity for sports and fitness companies.
Saudi Arabia also launched a SR 15 billion tourism development fund in June 2020 to develop the sector in collaboration with private and investment banks. With tourism envisioned as the new pillar of the kingdom’s oil-free economy, sports tourism will be a key element of that strategy, from developing smaller facilities to multi-billion dollar megaprojects.
Since 2016, the kingdom has actively competed to host major international sporting events and has sought to attract international investment by developing sports venues that are popular with Saudi audiences. Football, boxing and wrestling are particularly popular with the Saudi public and are among the top international events in Saudi Arabia.
The Kingdom is expected to continue to take advantage of opportunities to host sporting events, as well as sports that take into account the natural benefits of the Saudi landscape, such as desert sports at AlUla and water sports at NEOM and the Red Sea Project.
While Saudi Arabia has high ambitions for its competitiveness in professional sports as part of Vision 2030, recreational and tourism sports represent a broader range of activities and a sustainable market opportunity to build a new pillar of the country’s oil-free economy.

Dubai: A swift move to remote negotiation helped the courts of the Dubai International Financial Center deal with a significant increase in lawsuits filed in the English-speaking common law jurisdiction, figures released on Monday show.

Since the COVID-19 pandemic began in 2020, the courts have introduced remote negotiation and digital capabilities. All hearings are now taking place on digital platforms, giving court users more choice and flexibility, as well as more appropriate access to justice.
The move to digital remote negotiation follows a guideline from June 2021 by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al-Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, with the Ministry of Justice being instructed to hold 80 percent of court hearings virtually by the end of 2021.
Figures released on Monday show that the volume of cases before the main court of first instance in 2021 increased 11 percent over the same period in 2020, up 27 percent year-over-year with an average case value of AED 56.9 million.
Cases within the CFI’s arbitration division also saw a 36 percent increase in 2021. The total value of claims across all departments was AED 3.4 billion.
Cases brought to court concerned sectors such as banking, finance, construction, real estate and manufacturing, while disputes related to breach of contract, outstanding payments, wills and estates, and employment relationships.
There was also a remarkable number of “opt-in” cases for the first six months of 2021, with 50 percent of claims coming from parties who chose to use the DIFC courts to resolve disputes.
The total value of enforcement claims filed was AED 568 million in the first half of 2021, an increase of 198 percent over the previous year. The total number of claims rose by 8 percent compared to the first half of 2020.
Greater awareness and innovative use of technology, including the region’s first “Smart SCT” virtual court, have resulted in more than 64 percent of registered lawsuits coming from parties who choose SCT as their preferred method of resolution.
Zaki Azmi, Chief Justice of the DIFC Court of Justice, said, “The growing maturity of the DIFC courts is now reflected in the increased awareness and confidence in our ability to not only provide world class access to judicial services, but also to ensure the highest standards of legal expertise and supervision. ”
He added: “We are continuing our efforts towards full digital transformation and equipping our court users with the most advanced tools to create legal certainty and legal certainty for companies in an era of technological disruption.

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