Finance articles

Coming out on top

Coming out on top

News does not move the markets; perceptions move the markets. Nowhere has this axiom been truer than in the Lebanese financial markets in this intense year of 2005. The amount of negative vibes emanating from the country this year would have lead many linear thinking people to think that the year was headed for a

Buildimg up the financial markets

Jean Riachi Chairman, Financial Funds Advisers E How could UN sanctions on Syria affect Lebanon’s finance sector? What can we expect from Syria in the long term, after possible regime change or crisis resolution? I don’t think UN sanctions on Syria would affect Lebanon’s finance sector. I don’t see how they could affect it. They

High Liquidity Saves the day

2005 has been a testing year for Lebanese banks. But it could have been a whole lot worse for the country’s most reliable economic sector were it not for the vision and caution of Lebanon’s central bank, Banque du Liban (BDL), which, seasoned by decades of political and security turmoil, was able to mitigate the

The Case For BLC Bank

Background Despite its new look logo and name, BLC Bank is one of Lebanon’s oldest banks, and also historically quite prestigious by domestic standards. Previously named Banque Libanaise pour le Commerce, BLC was founded by the Abou Jaoudeh family in the early 1950s. Prior to the Lebanese civil war, the bank was a major private

Freddy Baz : Chief strategic advisor, Banque AUDI

E In the latest Banque Audi report, you state that Lebanon was a “no growth environment in 2005,” but that it was able to “avoid a recessionary trap.” How were we able to do this and what if any role did the banks play? What we wanted to highlight is that we are not in

Hedging your bets

with many businesses across all sectors suffering from the fluctuation in the euro and watching their profitability erode, it is important to recap on hedging, the process via which businesses can lessen the impact of unexpected currency moves on their bottom line. Without delving into the complex types of hedging, simply put, here is how

Q&A: Semaan Bassil

E: Byblos Bank today is very active in addressing new markets. What are the most important developments and what are the reasons behind them? Three years ago, the bank set up a strategy to start focusing outside of Lebanon, because the economy of Lebanon is small and our bank is big compared to the size

Brighter times for banking in Lebanon

In 2003, the Lebanese banking sector showed significant improvement in terms of deposit and asset growth, as well as in terms of profitability. The Paris II conference in late 2002 triggered a more efficient monetary policy from the part of the government and the central bank (BDL), which led to a sharp drop in deposit

No monkeying around on the markets

Financial markets despise uncertainty, but in Lebanon, these markets were served with large doses of uncertainty time and time again in 2004. Certainly, Lebanon’s geographical location did not help matters: worsening developments in Iraq, ongoing violence in the Palestinian territories, and the stand-off between Syria and the international community, all made markets twitchy. On the

Finance Voices – Where’s the regulation?

Ziad Maalouf: Senior Vice President of MENA Capital SAL E: Would the Lebanese financial industry benefit from a more stringent regulatory environment? Do you see any realistic opportunities for a more advanced regulatory framework that would contribute to greater investor confidence in 2005? The Lebanese financial sector is in a dismal state today. Investor confidence