Oil: special focus
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Oil: special focus

Euromoney's latest coverage of black gold.


Recent coverage:


African Eurobond plans off the table after oil price plunge
March 2020
Africa’s oil exporters are feeling the pressure after the crash in the oil price and fears of the coronavirus Covid-19, as investors pull money from international bond markets.

Oil vs coronavirus: How will Gulf economies fare?
March 2020
A double shock of Covid-19 and falling oil prices brings the spectre of recession to the Gulf, while efforts to diversify economies are being derailed.

Nigeria could slip again on oil
March 2020
The recent collapse in the oil price and Nigeria's (lack of) reaction to it echoes the way the country dealt with the crisis in 2015. Repetition of the same mistakes will only cause harm for Africa's largest economy.

Mexico: Banks free Pemex from bondage
May 2019
HSBC, JPMorgan and Mizuho lend Mexico’s oil company $8 billion after investors show no interest in non-deal roadshow – and that’s the least of the firm’s problems.

Middle East: Leaders who guided a region through 50 turbulent years
March 2019
Over 50 years, leaders of Middle East financial institutions have steered their businesses through very good and very bad times, including oil price crashes, rampant property and stock speculation, and war. Some key figures highlight the events they remember most and spell out lessons for the next generation.

Can the Gulf break the habit of half a century?
March 2019
Less than five years after Euromoney began, the Arab oil embargo gave international finance a shot in the arm and provided an extraordinary windfall to the Gulf, but as the oil boom has repeatedly turned to bust, commodity cycles have laid bare the vacuity of the region’s diversification programmes. Today, with local populations expanding, harder and less stable times could lie ahead if the region does not take more drastic action – even when oil prices bounce back.

Gulf country risk: Qatar, Saudi Arabia on shakier ground
February 2019
Prospects are improving, but the negative impact of Qatar’s isolation, given oil price volatility and the lack of diversification, has removed the cushion of safety the region took for granted.

Saudi Arabia gets MSCI recognition
July 2018
Inclusion in the emerging market index is recognition of the country’s reforms and could bring $50 billion of foreign investment.

Country risk: Russia takes centre stage
June 2018

When the World Cup fanfare is over, investors must gauge whether the country represents a better bet than other emerging markets – and there are still some nagging doubts.

Southern Africa’s new leaders still have much to prove
May 2018

The new presidents of Angola, South Africa and Zimbabwe could do better, but banks and investors will have plenty of due diligence to do when deciding whether or not and how to commit more resources to these countries.

Nigerian banks make a mint from a crisis
May 2018
Oil prices and currency controls created opportunities for some banks, which reported bumper gains from FX and fixed income last year, but no one is expecting a repeat of that. Can lending keep them sweet?

Country risk: Debt-ridden Angola turns a corner
May 2018
The new president has made the start required to ensure investors take notice, with higher oil prices increasing liquidity, corruption addressed and business regulation improving.

Baiduri Bank bemoans the burden of Brunei’s bounty
March 2018
Financial markets are woefully underdeveloped in this oil- and gas-rich country. For Baiduri Bank, which is mulling a listing in Kuala Lumpur, that makes growing a tough proposition.

The conservation conversation after Bears Ears

December 2017
Initiatives designed to attract investment to conservation got a boost at the end of the year.

Ghana’s next oil boom is just around the corner
November 2017
The sovereign has recorded one of the largest improvements of any sub-Saharan borrower this year in Euromoney’s country risk survey – the recovering oil market, contract certainty and plans to expand the extractive industry explain why.

Oil has Oman over a barrel
September 2017
oil canisters-600
Low oil prices have put Oman’s government under pressure, while regional political turmoil could make life even more uncomfortable. A new economic model is called for, but can the leaders in Muscat find one quickly enough?

Country risk: Russia is on the long road back
June 2017

The rebound in the price of oil from below $30/barrel in early 2016 to $54/barrel in May has helped Russia avoid more disastrous consequences.

Azerbaijan’s risks are spiralling
May 2017
Confidence in the oil producer is wavering as a bank crisis unfolds.

Africa: Ghana’s power failure

May 2017
Ghana’s bulk distribution companies (BDCs) were supposed to be a tool to control capital flight in the oil and gas sector, but problems started to arise in 2009 when the government’s own oil distribution company and oil storage and transportation company began to compete directly with the BDCs.

Middle East: Saudi banks breathe as liquidity fears ease
May 2017
The liquidity issues that have plagued the Kingdom’s banks for months appear to have abated. But a persistently low oil price and the impending generational reform programme mean that Saudi Arabia’s financial sector still faces some big challenges.

New Kuwait highlights the same old problems
April 2017
Despite the halving of the oil price and the fact that 90% of Kuwait’s fiscal revenues come from sales of oil, the emirate is still expected to have a budget surplus this year.

Asia: Singapore banks can’t shake oil services headache 
March 2017 
Blighted by souring loans; boosted by wealth management.

Will ETF providers join the Church and save the planet? 
March 2017 

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Religious organizations are challenging corporations over climate change, while big investors stay mute.

Euromoney Country Risk survey results 2016: Italy, UK and US shocks underline the risks of populism, as oil exporters take a caning
January 2017

world-bomb jpeg-600 
ECR’s crowd-sourcing survey shows global risk rising in 2016, with leading economists and political experts revising their views on asset safety.

FX: Opec finally reaches deal to cut oil production
December 2016
After failing to reach agreement at its last two meetings, Opec agreed this week to cut oil output for the first time in eight years. The oil price responded favourably, but lingering doubts about the finer details could mean the impact is short lived.

Price pressures force change in oil and gas treasury strategy
November 2016 
The oil and gas sector has so far avoided making wholesale change to its treasury processes, but as the low price environment continues, firms are now being forced to explore cost cutting.

Mexico: Pemex woes deepen amid oil rout
May 2016 

Record losses and huge debts hit CDS; sovereign contagion free, so far.

Country risk: Oil crisis sharpens Nigeria’s investor risks 
April 2016 
Muhammadu Buhari posters-R-600
A plunging country risk score illustrates how the problems are still mounting for Africa’s largest economy.

Energy: PE weighs risks as banks shun oil and gas 
April 2016 
Private equity firms quick to exploit oil sector distress; end investors remain cautious.

Regulation can't help oil patch banks 
April 2016 
It is the wider impacts that could undo financial firms, whatever the regulators recommend.

Oil slump raises Venezuela default risk
February 2016
Sovereign highly exposed to oil price drop; default still not fully priced into bonds.

US high yield pays a high oil price
April 2015
Outflows of $2 billion in one week; investors seek shorter duration.

M&A: Energy consolidation on cards as oil price tanks

January 2015
M&A needs to be long term; Corporates under pressure to re-lever

Euromoney Country Risk survey results 2014: Negative oil shock creates new threats

January 2015
With falling oil prices sending the currencies of hydrocarbons producers tumbling, amid political instability, conflict risk and weak, unbalanced economies persisting, almost half the world’s sovereigns endured higher risk in 2014.


Oil price lessons from 1983

December 2014 
Crude oil prices dropped precipitously in the latter part of 2014, raising challenging questions about where they might go in 2015. Undershooting well below a mythical fundamental equilibrium price is a distinct possibility if history is any guide. 

Oil might soon be $25 a barrel or less

From the archives - February 1983: 
What Bluford H Putnam and Lee Thomas said about the falling oil price in 1983.


Inside investment: Oil – let it flow, let it flow

December 2014

Oh the markets outside are frightful, but the dollar is so delightful, add oil for a rosy glow, let it flow, let it flow, let it flow.

US high-yield feels full force of oil price collapse

December 2014

Some parts of the US market are ‘carnage’; energy bond maturity wall is not due until after 2017.

Emerging markets ride 2014 FX rollercoaster

December 2014

"At the current price of oil, India will practically eliminate its current-account deficit, for the first time in a decade, which should mitigate pressure on the rupee."

Global economy's end-of-year verdict: 'Try harder'

Sponsored by VTB Capital; December 2014
There is an elevated risk of a global recession in 2015 given eurozone stagflation, setbacks in Japan, a debt-ridden China, the risk of the oil-price collapse triggering geopolitical risk and diminishing returns from G7 monetary stimulus. 


Sliding oil price heightens risks for energy-exporting nations

December 2014 euromoney.com

Economists have been downgrading oil exporters’ risk scores in recent weeks, but there might be worse to come if spot prices and petro-currencies continue to fall.

Against the tide: A new era for energy

December 2014

The recent dramatic fall in the crude oil price poses the question: is this just a blip due to temporary fears about global economic growth, or is it the start of a longer-term shift in market dynamics?


Middle East

Oil has Oman over a barrel 

September 2017 

oil canisters-600

Low oil prices have put Oman’s government under pressure, while regional political turmoil could make life even more uncomfortable. A new economic model is called for, but can the leaders in Muscat find one quickly enough?

Middle East: Kuwait still cooking with falling oil

April 2015

The country is vulnerable to a continuing low oil price, but that doesn’t seem to be stopping it from keeping up the pace of capital projects. And there are still plenty of reforms to make if the state is to develop the economy.

Saudi risk score plummets as oil shock intensifies

December 2014The sovereign’s risk score has fallen in recent days as lower oil prices add to the Kingdom’s existing economic, political and structural weaknesses.


Angola goes after diversification

September 2015

The fall in the oil price and the de-dollarization of the economy has done even more to highlight Angola’s over-dependence on oil. As a result, the diversification of the economy is higher-up on the government’s agenda than ever before.

Angola: New exchange faces liquidity question

September 2015

Chief executive admits concerns; equity trading planned for 2016.

Nigeria’s investment banks feel the squeeze

July 2015

Like everything else in Nigeria, investment banking will be hit by weak oil prices. Local players may struggle more than their global counterparts.

Nigeria's troubles hold lessons for corporate IB

July 2015

Commodity price drop will drive NPLs; difficulties could help local capital markets.

Nigeria: falling oil price, crumbling legitimacy?

June 2015

Depressed oil prices mean that government revenue in Nigeria is sliding but raising revenue without alienating Nigeria’s most vulnerable will be a difficult feat.

Africa: Nigeria’s banks stare down the barrel

May 2015

Inspired by the previous government’s agenda, Nigeria’s banks loaded up on loans to local oil and gas companies. The rapid decline in the price of oil has put many of the companies they lent to in distress. Can the banks cope with the potential fall-out?

Nigeria: Good luck, Buhari

May 2015

Peaceful elections in Nigeria herald a new era for the country, but will the elation last while depressed oil prices hold back the country’s development?

Emerging markets: Weak oil prices, stronger Africa

February 2015

The falling oil price has hit oil exporters hard, especially in Africa. But the region has three strengths that should protect its capital markets from the current crisis.

Angolan SWF chairman calls for greater support as oil price falls

December 2014

The Angolan government could provide greater financial support to its fledgling $5 billion sovereign wealth fund (SWF), according to its chairman, amid rising concerns over the impact falling oil prices will have on the country's economy.

Carlyle picks up stake in Nigeria's Diamond Bank

November 2014

Executives from Diamond Bank and Carlyle reveal the rationale for the latter's investment in the lender, citing the long-term investment horizon despite the oil-driven volatility in Nigeria’s economy.

Angola sets sights on capital-markets reform

November 2014

Following the global financial crisis, Angola’s economy took another blow and further delayed the opening of the exchange. With heavy reliance on oil exports, the crisis saw prices for Angola’s crude plummet from around $140 per barrel to $60. Unable to pay back loans secured by oil revenue, construction came to a halt. Angola was forced to turn to the IMF for support.

Latin America

Oil slump raises Venezuela default riskFebruary 2016Sovereign highly exposed to oil price drop; default still not fully priced into bonds.

Oil pours trouble on Venezuela’s economy

September 2015

Parallel FX rate rockets; default more and more likely.

Oil drop prompts Mexico review

April 2015

Growth rates revised downwards; investors still 'cautiously’ optimistic.

Colombia faces oil price test

December 2014

No short-term response to price shift; fiscal discipline key to economy.

Latin America: Sovereigns shape up for differentiation

November 2014

"Mexico is going to be a new player and a strong player and it has tremendous potential. Oil companies are going to be interested in investing in Mexico...But Colombia will remain competitive"

Emerging Europe

Russia's risk score plummets to its lowest since 1998 default

November 2014

If oil prices remain low for a prolonged period and, simultaneously, Russian companies’ and banks’ access to foreign funding is severely curtailed, "we are likely to see a significant uplift in sovereign and banks’ credit risk."

Russia central bank attempts rouble crisis circuit-breaker

November 2014

Russia incentive to implement difficult reforms has an inverse correlation to the oil price, and oil-price surges back to $100-per-barrel levels could further delay fiscal efforts.


Taxing times for Indonesia’s new finance minister

May 2015

Technocrat Bambang Brodjonegoro has plans to turn the country’s state-owned enterprises into regional, if not global, leaders. But the fall in the oil price could quickly scupper his ambitions, unless he can improve Indonesia’s terrible record on tax collection.

Oil and Abenomics in the great yen tug of war

January 2015

The yen has been quietly strengthening in recent days, amid renewed concerns about global demand pushing down the price of oil and fresh fears over Europe. If this trend persists, it could be problematic for Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe, who is closely associated with a policy of yen weakness.

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