Capital Intelligence Founded in 1982, the agency is based in Cyprus with an office in Hong Kong.

Owned by Middle Eastern and European investors, it has 28 staff and has issued reports or ratings on about 300 banks in Asia and North Africa, including ratings for 20 Gulf banks.

IBCA IBCA, founded in 1978, is based in London and owned by France’s Centenaire Blanzy (70 per cent) and its own management (30 per cent). With 150 staff, IBCA has rated or reported on over 500 financial institutions and corporates worldwide. The agency has around 1,500 subscribers.

In the Gulf, IBCA has rated:

Kuwait: Sovereign credit rating (MEED 5:1:96), Gulf Bank (MEED 9:2:96), National Bank of Kuwait (10:5:95), Bahrain International Bank.

Moody’s Investors Service Founded in 1900, US-based Moody’s is the oldest of the agencies. Owned by Dun & Bradstreet Corporation, it set up an office in Cyprus in 1995. In the Gulf, it has rated the sovereign credit of all six Gulf Arab states (MEED 9:2:96) and the following banks:

Kuwait: National Bank of Kuwait, Gulf Bank and Burgan Bank (MEED 3:5:96);

Kuwait Finance House (MEED 21:6:96) UAE: National Bank of Abu Dhabi, Emirates Bank International, Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank and MashreqBank (MEED 5:4:96, Feature 19:4:96).

Oman:Bank Muscat Al-Ahli Al-Omani, Oman Arab Bank, Oman International Bank and National Bank of Oman (MEED 24:5:96).

Qatar: National Bank of Qatar, Doha Bank, Commercial Bank of Qatar (MEED 21:6:96).

Bahrain: National Bank of Bahrain and Bank of Bahrain & Kuwait (MEED 5:4:96).

Standard & Poor’s The agency, founded in 1941, is based in New York and owned by US information group McGraw Hill. It has about 1,300 staff and has rated the debt and credit of 5,000 entities, including governments.

S&P covers the Middle East from London. In the Gulf, it has rated Qatar and Oman (MEED 16:2:96) and Arab Banking Corporation (ABC). It has produced a report on Saudi banking and is planning to bring Out another on the UAE.

Thomson BankWatch Founded in 1974, BankWatch is now owned by Thomson Corporation of the US and is based in New York. It has about 65 staff and 2,000 subscribers and has rated around 1,000 banks.

In the Gulf, the agency has rated Arab National Bank, Saudi American Bank and Saudi Cairo Bank in Saudi Arabia and Qatar National Bank and Commercial Bank of Qatar (MEED 24:5:96).

DO’S