Qatar Today - - BUSINESS > BANK NOTES -

Bank liq­uid­ity in the six-na­tion Gulf Co­op­er­a­tion Coun­cil has been tight­en­ing as a more than 50% slump in crude oil prices since mid-2014 slows de­posit growth and pushes gov­ern­ments to boost bor­row­ing. The sit­u­a­tion in Qatar be­came a big­ger is­sue at the start of the year than it was in 2008, ac­cord­ing to ex­perts.

Lenders in Qatar had ex­pe­ri­enced “ex­tra­or­di­nary stress” this year amid the tight­en­ing liq­uid­ity and were forced to adapt their busi­nesses to the low-oil en­vi­ron­ment. But Doha Bank QSC Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer R. Seethara­man has said that con­di­tions are im­prov­ing af­ter the coun­try's $9 bil­lion bond sale in May. Banks were also fac­ing a nar­row­ing in net in­ter­est mar­gins and higher in­ter­est ex­penses, he said. With the $9 bil­lion bond sale, the cost of fund­ing is also com­ing down for banks, said Seethara­man.

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