Morning Round-Up – Ezz Steel, Sukari goldmine, Nasdaq Dubai

Business news from Egypt and the region 

Trading in Ezz Steel shares was halted on the Egyptian exchange yesterday until the company responds to stock market’s inquiries regarding a report that says a bank has stopped disbursing around $148 million to the company.

Egypt money supply rises 8.4% in year to June – This is the entire amount of currency and other liquid instruments in a country’s economy at one particular time.

Egypt’s top banker turns down vice-PM post – Tareq Amer, chairman of the country’s largest bank National Bank of Egypt, retracted his acceptance of the post after a “disagreement”.  Egypt needs a businessman in a high level position to reassure foreign investors.

At one point, rumours surfaced Mohamed El Erian, CEO of PIMCO, would be PM, but he quickly denied these rumours.

El Erian isn’t one to shy away from the media spotlight however.  He’s a regular columnist on Bloomberg, and has started writing a new column for Foreign Policy called The New New Normal.

Egypt’s Sukari gold mine workers end strike after winning demands – Sukari gold mine, owned by the London-listed Centamin has had months of disruption because after labour unrest and a fuel subsidy shortage problem (both these problems are “insignificant” and being resolved, the Chairman of the company, Josef El Raghy, told me last week over the phone).

In other news:

Nasdaq Dubai, the third stock exchange in the UAE, has named Hamed Ali as it’s new COO and said it’s CEO Jeff Singer has stepped down to take the role of CEO of the DIFC.   This move was pretty much expected for many in the market considering Jeff Singer had to face a market that only trades a few stocks, that has to cope with failed IPOs (Axiom, the telecoms outfit had to scrap its IPO because of illiquid market conditions in 2010), and has had to maneuver around two other stock exchanges with totally different rules (the Dubai Financial Market and the Abu Dhabi Stock Exchange).

DP World, the marine operator traded on Nasdaq Dubai, reported a 7.5% jump in container volumes in the first half of 2012.

Also results from Bahrain’s Investcorp, which said its full-year net income fell by more than half because of lower returns on its investment portfolio.

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