Banking & Finance articles

Great potential in need of an edge

Great potential in need of an edge

“Why is there so much more research done on baldness than on malaria? Because rich people go bald, and they don’t die of malaria.” William H. Gates III There were times when homegrown private banking in Lebanon looked like a short-distance runner trailing behind the field in a long-distance race. A decade ago, whenever Executive would

Crash course on markets

It was as if the in-laws had decided on New Year’s Eve that it would be fun to come for an unannounced visit. Volatility. It is part of the family experience in any investment strategy and, like the parents-in-law, volatility is never far away but the average investor feels so much more comfortable when it

Skating on

It has been documented beyond any question that when it comes to discussions of the outlook for the future, bankers are no more endowed with privileged knowledge or exclusive insights than the next best economist or fortune teller. The caveat against clairvoyance has been enforced in 2015, in no insignificant form, by the frantic performances

Data deficiency syndrome

Incomplete as they are, the numbers look bad for Lebanon’s real estate sector in 2015. Construction permits are down. The number of transactions is down. Cement deliveries are down. Full-year stats were not available at time of writing, but year-on-year comparisons of the most recent data point to a deepening slump after a boom phase

Export dynamics

2015 has been a tumultuous year for Lebanon’s food industrialists. The Ministry of Public Health’s food safety campaign greatly impacted Lebanese consumables in foreign markets, while the closure of traditional land routes raised the cost of exports. Despite these changes, however, the sub-sector has seen an uptick in investment and potential new markets and trade

Stepping into the light

Historically, insurance companies and organizations for mutual protection have originated from taking on roles in the acceptance and coverage of risks that led them in a next step to develop strategies for risk mitigation and, with further passing of time, assume responsibilities to prepare for future risks. With the present era’s accumulations of uncertainties and

Make it or break it

With Lebanon’s economy stuck in a rut, only limited options remain available to support the country’s struggling manufacturing sector. Executive sat down with the person at the helm of the sector for an update on industrial and agricultural developments – Minister of Industry Hussein Hajj Hassan, whose long political career as a parliamentarian includes chairmanship

Insuring Lebanon

Executive sits down to talk shop with Max Zaccar, who was elected in May 2015 to be the president of the Association des Compagnies d’Assurances au Liban (ACAL), the association of the Lebanese insurance industry. E   How do you assess the situation in the insurance sector in the year to date? The figures show

Speed bumps ahead

Executive sat with Antoine Boukather, president of the Automobile Importers Association (AIA) of Lebanon, to discuss the industry and regulatory issues in the transport sector. E   Has it been another difficult year for the sector? Of course. Lebanon is in political turmoil and we urge the politicians to double their efforts to find a