Saudi banks deny exposure to global financial crisis

07 October 2008
Five of the largest banks in Saudi Arabia have said they have no exposure to international mortgage markets and that the credit crisis hitting US and European banks is not affecting them.

Al-Rajhi, Samba and Riyad Bank, the top three banks in the kingdom, along with Banque Saudi Fransi and Arab National Bank, all said that their financial positions have not been affected by falling international real estate markets.

The statements were issued through the Saudi stock exchange (Tadawul) on 7 October.

They were issued separately to third-quarter results, which have been released by Saudi banks in recent days.

Al-Rajhi, Banque Saudi Fransi and Arab National Bank all reported a growth in profits, although Samba and Riyad reported a decline in profits of 7.4 per cent and 28 per cent respectively.

The statements are a response to the falling shares prices in Saudi banks, which have followed the fall in the value of financial institutions globally.

Shares in Al-Rajhi fell by 5.2 per cent on 7 October, while Samba fell by 9.9 per cent. ANB was down by 8.8 per cent, Banque Saudi Fransi by 9.9 per cent, and Samba fell 10 per cent.

Tadawul market rules stop shares falling any more than 10 per cent a day.

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