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Mumtalakat Holdings to move into bonds, stocks

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Reuters reports, ” Bahrain’s sovereign wealth fund, which invests mostly at home, plans to diversify away from private equity projects and into stocks and bonds, its CEO said on Thursday. Talal Al Zain also told Reuters that Mumtalakat expects to receive a credit rating this year, which would allow it to tap capital markets for funding, including Islamic bonds. Mumtalakat, which has assets of around $10 billion, has investments in 35 companies. It holds stakes above 50 percent in more than 15 of those firms.

“We want to diversify. We will be looking at investments across markets. Our immediate focus will be to diversify investments, channel funds more towards liquidity, that is fixed income, equity markets,” Zain said in an interview.

A $1 billion motor sports-themed commercial real estate project in Bahrain was likely to be financed by a combination of investment from strategic investors, private sector funding and some of its own equity, he said. But Mumtalakat would wait to receive its credit rating later this year before issuing bonds.”

read more: Reuters

Korea’s NPS Invests In Crypto Exchanges Amid Crackdown

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South Korean news outlets have reported that South Korea’s National Pension Service (NPS) has unwittingly invested roughly US$ 2.4 million in four local cryptocurrency exchanges – Korbit, Upbit, Coinplug, and Bithumb – even as regulatory officials move to subdue the unbridled enthusiasm for crypto trading that has flourished in the tiny country. The US$ 550 billion pension scheme invested in the cryptocurrency exchanges indirectly through two venture capital funds handled by external managers with exclusive rights over asset allocation, according to an NPS officer.

Crypto trading has proved wildly popular in South Korea, drawing an estimated one million citizens to the largely unregulated exchanges that have cropped up over the past few years. South Korea, which is ranked first in the world in terms of internet sped, is the largest market for cryptocurrency transactions behind Japan and United States, and accounts for 29.8% of trade globally, according to a report released by the Korea Insurance Research Institute (KIRI) in December 2017.

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Ripple Attempts to go the Central Bank Route

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San Francisco-based Ripple, a tech company that professes the use of blockchain to reboot the payment systems globally, landed a big deal with the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA). Ripple started a pilot program that will be spearheaded by SAMA and a few Saudi banks to deploy xCurrent for cross-border payments. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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Investment Corporation of Dubai Eyes $1 Billion Loan Deal

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The Investment Corporation of Dubai (ICD) plans to raise US$ 1 billion in a loan to refinance existing debt. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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