News

Saudi regulator approves testing for robo-advisors

Robo-adviserSaudi Arabia’s securities regulator, the Saudi Capital Markets Authority (SMCA) has given the green light for two local firms, Wahed Capital and Haseed Investing Company, to test their robo-advisor services. The move follows numerous initiatives from regulators in the region, including the Saudi central bank, to encourage the growth of robo-advice and the use of new technology such as blockchain settlement and crypto assets. The SMCA’s decision will allow clients of the two firms to offer discretionary investment management via an online automated platform through what the regulator has termed a “financial technology experiment permit”. Meanwhile Bahrain has issued a full regulatory license to Rain, a local cryptocurrency exchange, in its own bid to become the region’s centre for digital asset management and crypto trading.  According to Rain, the decision makes it the first cryptocurrency exchange to earn a regulatory license in the Middle East. ©2019 funds global mena

Executive Interviews

INTERVIEW: ‘Financing is the blood of Iran’s economy’

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Amid a fresh wave of American sanctions, Romil Patel spoke to Meysam Hamedi, director of financial markets and instruments at Iran’s Securities & Exchange Organization (SEO).

INTERVIEW: Totally mega

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In 2016, global consulting firm PWC forecast the emergence of five global ‘megatrends’ in the next two decades. Stephen Anderson, its Middle East clients and markets leader, talks about their...

Roundtables

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With the MENA region at a tipping point, our panellists talk about economic diversification, the impact of regulation and the delayed Saudi Aramco listing. Chaired by Romil Patel in Dubai.

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Our cross-industry panel discuss the positive backdrop in Egypt, the Dana Gas controversy and the potential index upgrades of Saudi Arabia and Kuwait. Chaired by George Mitton in Dubai.