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Global investors pull $1.1bn from Saudi Arabia over Khashoggi incident

Global investors pull $1.1bn from Saudi Arabia over Khashoggi incident

Investors all across the world have pulled $1.1bn in funds from Saudi Arabia last week , over the continuing diplomatic dispute on the disappearance of journalist Jamal Khashoggi

This is also unlikely to stop anytime soon as the dispute is set to get even more intense.

Arqaam Capital research director, Michael Malkoun told Yahoo Finance UK: “Foreigners were net sellers in the Saudi market last week to the tune of SAR 4.0bn, equivalent to $1.1bn.This is the highest level of net foreign selling registered since the Tadawul (stock exchange) began to publish this data in 2015.”

The Tadawul possesses a large domestic ownership– as only 5% of the stocks are owned by foreign investors. This has largely allowed the Tadawul,– which has a market capitalisation of $507bn– to avoid heavy losses. In fact, it saw a flow of $1bn between the beginning of September and October.

However, fund managers have now gotten increasingly anxious over the diplomatic fallout over the emerging details of Khashoggi’s murder.

Over the weekend, Saudi Arabia stated that Khashoggi was murdered but instead blamed a “rogue operation” for his killing. Saudi’s foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir called the act a “tremendous mistake” in an interview with Fox News.

Khashoggi was an outspoken critic of Saudi’s authoritarian regime and was last seen entering the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on 2 October. Al-Jubeir has denied that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud had ordered the killing.

Several politicians and global business leaders have pulled out of an investment conference in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia in the coming week—because of the worldwide diplomatic dispute over the matter.

Saudi Arabia’s Future Investment Initiative, a conference that is widely known as the “Davos of the Middle East,” has provided a platform for business leaders and politicians to take a stand against the lack of information and transparency over what happened to Khashoggi.

Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi, AOL founder Steve Case, IMF managing director Christine Lagarde, and JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon are among the growing list of people that have cancelled their invite at the conference. 

Siemens boss Joe Kaeser is also under pressure from the senior German politicians to withdraw from the event as well. He has yet to make his decision.

“I hope that Joe Kaeser will rethink this,” the leader of the Social Democrats (SPD), Andrea Nahles, told the Bild am Sonntag newspaper on Sunday.

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