Gold regained strength on Wednesday as a weaker US dollar spurred buying from jewellers, but prices were still within sight of an almost four-month low given signs of progress in US fiscal talks that dented bullion's safe-haven appeal.
Brent futures edged up near $109 a barrel on Wednesday, tracking a rally in most other risk assets on expectations that a budget crisis in the United States will be resolved, saving the world's top oil consumer from slipping into recession.
The World Bank has pledged $900 million to Iraq over the next four years to help it create jobs, build stronger institutions and improve social inclusion, the global development lender said.
More than US$400bn of illicit cash flowed out of the six GCC countries between 2001 and 2010, according to a report by a global financial watchdog.
Gasoline prices in Lebanon continued to increase slowly for the third week Wednesday, the weekly price update shows.
Abu Dhabi-based hotelier Rotana is on track to open eight properties in the Middle East in 2013, according to pipeline data obtained by Hotelier Middle East.
Zain Saudi extended the maturity of a 9 billion riyals ($2.40 billion) Islamic loan for another six weeks on Wednesday, the sixth time the loss-making telecom operator has deferred payment.
Saudi Arabian Mining Co (Maaden), which has an aluminium joint venture with Alcoa, raised 9 billion riyals ($2.4 billion) through an Islamic loan facility to help fund its future projects, it has said.