Saudi Arabia’s non-oil private sector grew at its fastest rate for 11 months in November, in a sign that the economy may finally be recovering from austerity measures imposed at the start of 2018, a monthly survey of companies showed on Thursday.The private sector has been struggling all year with the impact of fuel price hikes, the introduction of a 5 percent value-added tax and higher fees for hiring foreign workers.

  • COAL

It’s not shaping up as a merry Christmas for coal exporters to Asia as the region’s top buyers, China and India, pull back from the recent trend of strong imports.India, the second-largest coal importer behind China, also appears to be cutting back in December, with a mere 755,535 tonnes discharged in the first five days, a paltry daily rate of 151,107 tonnes.


The dollar was little changed on Thursday while the Chinese yuan fell after the arrest of the CFO of tech giant Huawei Technologies.

  • ASIAN 

 U.S. stock futures and Asian shares tumbled on Thursday after Canadian authorities arrested a top executive of Chinese tech giant Huawei for extradition to the United States, fanning fears of a fresh flareup in tensions between the two superpowers.

  • OIL

OPEC and Russia moved closer on Wednesday to agreeing cuts in oil production from next year despite pressure from U.S. President Donald Trump to reduce the price of crude.

OPEC meets on Thursday in Vienna, followed by talks with allies such as Russia on Friday. OPEC’s de facto leader, Saudi Arabia, has indicated a need for steep output reductions from January, fearing a glut, but Russia has resisted a large cut.

  • GOLD

Gold edged higher on Thursday as growing risk aversion weighed on the dollar, while palladium held ground at a premium to the bullion.Spot gold was up 0.2 percent at $1,239.86 per ounce, as of 0429 GMT, while U.S. gold futures were 0.2 percent higher at $1,244.9 per ounce.


Italy’s Deputy Prime Ministers Salvini and Di Maio to meet PM Conte today on Italy budget.Still no agreement on trimming 2 key Italy reforms.Salvini, Di Maio won’t go below 2% Italy deficit.PM Conte working to lower the deficit to 1.9%-2%.Italy lower house to vote on 2019 budget tomorrow.Italy budget goes to Senate on Monday.Italy may also lower 2020, 2021 budget deficit targets.

  • U.S

U.S. stock investors are wary that a 30 percent slump in oil prices will pressure corporate profits while also presenting a sign of weakness in global growth at a time they are already weighing when the long economic expansion will end.


Australia’s central bank has room to cut policy rates from current record lows although the next move is still likely to be an increase rather than a decrease, Deputy Governor Guy Debelle said on Thursday.


Russia will find it harder to cut oil output in winter than other producers because of the cold conditions at Russian oil fields, Interfax news agency quoted Energy Minister Alexander Novak as saying on Thursday. “We’ve said it previously ... for us it is much more difficult to cut than for other countries, stemming from our climatic conditions. That is a specific characteristic of our oil production sector,” Interfax quoted Novak as saying.