Banking & Finance articles

From foggy to cloudy

From foggy to cloudy

Ethereal. Ephemeral. Elusive. ETP, perhaps. Questing for upcoming banking-sector development opportunities in 2018 brings a whole palette of e-words to mind, including the “e” in ETP (electronic trading platform), but not the favorite e-word of marketers and their PR minions: exciting.  It seems that development opportunities in the banking sector are increasingly scarce, partly, of

Five cheers for stability

A good starting point for reviewing the Lebanese banking sector at the end of 2017 to study a document that was published early in the year and is referred to in financial High Valyrian as a FSAP. For common folks, this stands for Financial Sector Assessment Program. A FSAP is undertaken by the institutions missing

A good time to borrow

Home loans account for more than a quarter of local banks’ private sector lending. This is in large part thanks to subsidized loans from Banque du Liban (BDL), Lebanon’s central bank,  and loans from the Public Corporation for Housing (PCH), which are offered through local banks to lower-middle and low-income home buyers. A surge in

Visions of community

E   You say that the ABC Mall in Verdun is seeking to be a community mall, starting with the priority hiring of local staff who can walk to work. You are well aware of the challenges that exist in the neighborhood relating to traffic congestion and parking. What is your recipe for organizing parking

Visions of community

It’s hurray time for Lebanon’s consumer society. Shopaholics, retail marketers, mall strategists and their assorted public relations minions are gearing up for the launch of the third ABC Mall in Lebanon. The new retail temple is slated to open its doors this summer in Beirut’s Verdun quarter. It will accommodate over 200 stores, including its

Makram Azar

E   Where do you think the next economic bubble is? It’s the broadly defined technology sector, in which you need to differentiate how you approach and analyze each one of these ventures because some of them will be very successful – as the 90s showed us with Amazon, Google, Apple, etc. – yet, many of

Video: Natacha Tannous interviews Makram Azar about banking, US and European Macro Economics and the Middle East

Makram Azar is Chairman of Banking EMEA and Chairman of Barclays Bank PLC, MENA. Makram also chairs the Senior Client Group globally. Mr. Azar joined Barclays in September 2010 from Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co (KKR) where he was Managing Director and Head of Middle East and North Africa. Prior to joining KKR, Mr. Azar

Roundup of numbers and sentiments

After a long and depressing dry spell that made local markets yearn for fresh investments, the Lebanese investment climate is looking up, says Jamil Koudim, the head of the asset management team at Beirut-based Banque Libano-Française (BLF). He presides over a family whose offspring has just doubled from a single fund to two. After the

Analysis of banking sector results

The profitability of alpha banks – those with deposits above $2 billion – has grown in the third quarter of 2016 when measured by the improved return on average equity (ROAE). The ROAE ratio at end of September was almost two percentage points higher than a year earlier. This insight from quarterly figures released after

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