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Brits buy as pound breaks euro barrier
Saudi mortgage law expected
The number of Brits buying euros for
Saudi Arabia’s first mortgage law is likely
property purchases increased slightly
to be unveiled in the next few months,
a move that could change the way
last month after sterling reached a rate
Saudis look at the property market. The
of €1.15 for the first time since August
Sharia-compliant legislation has been
on the cards for the past two years and
Foreign currency broker World First must now meet the approval of the
has seen a 40% increase in clients
council of ministers before going to the
buying euros, while new enquiries have
Shura Council, the country’s consultative
assembly. “It will be a qualitative jump
shot up by 24%.
in the way we finance housing in the
“A number of our clients in the market
country and in the way we use financial
for euros are taking advantage of the
instruments that are linked to the
improved exchange rate and buying housing market,” said Saudi Arabia’s
their euros for overseas mortgage
central bank governor, Mohammed al
payments and property purchases now,”
World First’s head of private clients,
Filipino developers raise
Elisabeth Dobson (pictured), told OPP. Step by step
Some say sterling must reach €1.20 to attract more Brit buyers
millions from bonds
“They are delighted to be getting
Developers in the Philippines are using
a rate that is up to 12% better than the end of the country’s recession, has €1.20 number,” Marc Morley-Freer, local debt markets to finance new
the lows we have seen over the last helped increase the pound’s strength. commercial director at Moneycorp, told
projects and provide customer credit. A
number of companies, including Ayala
17 months. There are a number of Meanwhile, economic problems in OPP. “After the UK election we could see
Land, Megaworld Corp and Robinsons
clients who will have been holding off Spain and Greece have weakened improvements that could push people
Land Corp have raised millions of dollars
on property purchases and overseas consumer confidence in the euro. to make lifestyle purchases – things are
by issuing retail bonds. Ayala said the
investments due to sterling’s weakness too uncertain before then.”
funds raised would be dedicated to
against the euro. This rate move will Continuing improvements World First’s chief economist Jeremy home financing schemes for buyers.
certainly spur people on.” Not all currency brokers have seen a Cook told OPP the current rally would
Stronger demand from overseas Filipino
A run of economic good news substantial increase in business. “€1.15 most likely be temporary. “But the
workers, who sent a projected US$15.8
billion back to the country last year,
from the UK, including a fall in is a bit of psychological barrier but most pound could be up to around €1.22 by
is expected to drive new residential
unemployment, rising inflation and clients are still waiting for the magic the end of the year,” he said.
developments in the country. The
country’s National Economic and
Development Authority estimated that
remittances from overseas Filipinos BUSINESS
would likely grow by 10% this year.
Deposit guarantee scheme
Egyptian mortgages go online
Egypt’s relatively young mortgage
‘could replace upfront deposits’
market has reached its next stage of
development with the country’s first
interactive mortgage website. Sakan
A new product promises to encourage those buyers who cannot quickly access
Finance last year became the first
mortgage company to receive a licence
UK property buyers by removing the their funds, protects off-plan buyers Grant Bailey
C&G have based the
from the Egyptian Financial Supervision
need for an up-front cash deposit. should the developer go bust, and scheme on an Australian product
Authority and now plans to offer its
Casualty & General Insurance (C&G) allows them to maximise interest by
products to Egyptian citizens online.
is offering buyers deposit guarantees holding onto their money for longer. of time,” said Grant Bailey, product “We’ve really focused on making the VEL
on domestic and overseas properties, The guarantee is an insurance manager for C&G Deposit Guarantees.
various features user-friendly, easy to
allowing them to delay paying their product, removing the need to arrange “[The guarantee] is forming part
locate info and ensuring that clients can
apply for their finance from the comfort
deposits by up to three years until security on any loan. “The product can of the essential incentive options
of their own homes,” Fathy El Sebaie,
purchase is completed. be put in place very quickly, enabling vendors and selling agents can provide
chairman of Sakan Finance, told Trade
This speeds up the sale process for the sale to be closed in a short amount purchasers.”
Luxembourg has moved to position itself as a hub Homebuyers rushing to beat the end of the UK’s Spanish mortgage lending fell 9.9% year-on-year ARKE
for Islamic finance, publishing a tax circular on the stamp duty holiday helped push up the country’s in November, according to the country’s National
treatment of Shariah-compliant products. The mortgage lending figures by 14% in December, Statistics Institute. Lending for the month totalled
governor of the country’s central bank said sukuk has defying the usual Christmas decline. Gross lending €6 billion while the average value of total approved
bcome a cheaper way of raising finance, “due to the rose to £13.7 million, up 3% from December 2008, mortgages decreased by 11.7% compared to the
burgeoning demand for Islamic instruments”. according to the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML). same period a year earlier.
FEB10_OPP_MAG.indd 15 28/01/2010 15:19
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