HSBC hosts the 19th Mid­dle East Eco­nom­ics Road­show in Kuwait

Kuwait Times - - LOCAL -

KUWAIT: More than 150 peo­ple gath­ered at the JW Mar­riot ho­tel re­cently for HSBC’s 19th Mid­dle East Eco­nom­ics Road­show. The event saw David Bloom, Global Head of For­eign Ex­change Strat­egy, and Si­mon Wil­liams, Chief Econ­o­mist, CEEMEA, dis­cuss the most im­por­tant global and re­gional trends shap­ing the Mid­dle East’s economies. Each year, the road­show vis­its Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and Riyadh.

Si­mon Wil­liams said: “Two years af­ter oil prices started to fall, the slump in en­ergy earn­ings still dom­i­nates the re­gional out­look. The Gulf is wealthy enough to weather the down­turn, but the price will be high - fall­ing re­serves, ris­ing debt, and slow­ing growth against a back­drop of spend­ing cuts that still have years to run. With­out a fresh pick up in oil prices, only struc­tural re­form can turn the story around - a tough ask for a re­gion that has spent two gen­er­a­tions de­pend­ing on its oil re­ceipts.”

David Bloom said: “Cur­ren­cies seem to be bro­ken up into three dis­tinct driv­ers: cycli­cal, struc­tural, and po­lit­i­cal. How­ever, as far as the big trended moves in for­eign ex­change are con­cerned, pol­i­tics has been the main driver. For ex­am­ple, Abe in Ja­pan, Modi in In­dia, Rouss­eff in Brazil and of course in the UK with Brexit. Lastly, we re­cently woke up to a game changer for FX when we were sur­prised to dis­cover the mighty US dol­lar is also a po­lit­i­cal cur­rency. This change now in­di­cates cau­tion when it comes to emerg­ing mar­kets.”

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