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Goldman (GS) Gets Consent for Equity Trading in Saudi Arabia

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The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. GS requested an amendment of its business profile and got approval from Saudi Arabia's Capital Market Authority. The company has been conducting business in Saudi Arabia since 2009 as an agent and underwriter.

The bank is now authorized to conduct dealing as principal, an agent, an underwriter, investment funds manager and discretionary portfolio manager in the kingdom. It also has the permission for arranging, advising and conducting custody activities in Saudi Arabia.

Saudi Arabia is trying to diversify its economy and decrease its dependence on oil through restructuring of public-sectors and investment in infrastructure. The government thus announced plans of Saudi Aramco's $100 billion initial public offering (IPO).

This is going to be a mega IPO, and financial institutions worldwide are trying to take advantage of this scope. Further, in order to attract investment by foreign institutions, Saudi’s government also eased limitations on ownership in its stock market last year.

Shares of Goldman have gained 33.6% in a year compared with the industry’s growth of 30.9%.

Currently, Goldman carries a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell).

You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. MTU got approval from the kingdom’s central bank in December 2016 to start its banking operations. The bank is expected to open its first branch in Riyadh next year and set to hire 20 people for the same. Similarly, Citigroup Inc. C also got capital
markets’ license to operate in Saudi Arabia in April this year, returning to the kingdom after more than 13 years. However, Credit Suisse Group CS has applied for a license to start a private banking business in Saudi Arabia.

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