NASDAQ Dubai, a stock exchange in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), announced today that it will be launching Saudi Arabian futures, allowing investors to tap into the Saudi market. The exchange will be providing equity futures in leading companies already listed in Saudi Arabia.
NASDAQ Dubai’s announcement will come as welcome news to investors looking to get a foothold in the emerging Saudi market. The country is going through a period of economic diversification as its leaders try to open up the country to foreign investors and reduce its continuing reliance on oil exports.
The Saudi Stock Exchange’s index, the Tadawul All-Share Index, has reflected this growing investor interest. In 2018 thus far, the index has increased by ten percent, with traded value on the exchange reaching SAR 399 billion ($106 billion), up 11 percent from the same period last year.
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Old companies – new futures
The futures that NASDAQ Dubai will offer will be on companies competing in some of Saudi Arabia’s largest industries. Although NASDAQ Dubai did not name names, they stated that futures can be traded in companies dealing in petrochemicals, real estate, transport, and banking.
Commenting on the move to launch Saudi futures, Hamed Ali, Chief Executive of Nasdaq Dubai, said: “The framework that we have built for trading and clearing Saudi futures is based on intensive consultations with regional and international market participants including brokers and potential investors. We are delighted to provide investors with an exciting new route to gain exposure to the kingdom’s dynamic and rapidly expanding equity markets.”
The move to launch Saudi futures follows on from similar moves made by NASDAQ Dubai in the past two years. In 2016 the exchange launched futures for seven UAE companies – that number has increased to seventeen today.