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Saudi Arabia’s plan to fix its oil ‘addiction’ won’t solve all of its problems alone (Advisor Perspectives)
Saudi Arabia’s Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman recently unveiled the Vision 2030 plan, which aims to curtail the kingdom’s “addiction” to oil.
However, “there are some problems in the Saudi economy that the Vision alone may not be able to solve,” argued Mark Mobius of Franklin Templeton Investments.
In his note, Mobius argues that several aspects of Saudi Arabia’s labour market and the kingdom’s fiscal policy present significant challenges:
For example, the Minister of Labour had to get involved after people who were working on the King Abdulaziz Airport expansion project in Jeddah were facing problems getting paid. Workers burned a number of company buses in protest over nonpayment of wages. In an effort to control the fiscal deficit, government ministries have been ordered to cut at least 5% of spending, and delays in payments to firms have created cash-flow problems for the companies as well as worker disturbances, in a country where demonstrations are not allowed. The issue of foreign workers is an important one as well, since foreign workers in Saudi Arabia are estimated to represent between 20% to 30% of the entire population, with Indians and Pakistanis the largest foreign groups. However, part of the Vision is a “Green Card” system, which aims to address issues with expatriate workers — so the government is certainly aware of these problems and trying to solve at least some of them.
Still, Mobius ended his note on an overall positive view of the kingdom’s future: “It’s our view that Saudi Arabia holds many interesting opportunities for investors, and if its expansive vision proves successful, it could cause economic growth to expand in many different directions — with or without high-flying oil prices.”
Financial advisors should attend at least once conference every year (Nerd’s Eye View)
Advisors should seriously consider going to at least one conference per year in order to get a fresh look at what’s new and exciting in the industry. Plus, it can help get advisors out of a “potential rut in your business and career,” argued Michael Kitces.
“Because ultimately, while there’s certainly value to going out for a conference to get a lot of CE credits all in one place, it’s the potential for business ideas and connections with other advisors that is really the most valuable,” he wrote. “Because often it takes an outsider’s perspective about the struggles you face to figure out how to move forward.”
Here are the US cities that have more deaths than births (Business Insider)
Business Insider’s Andy Kiersz put together a map using data from the US Census Bureau detailing the net births minus deaths in each metro area for the year between July 1, 2014 and July 1, 2015, adjusted by the July 2014 population of the metro area.
Metros with more births than deaths are in blue, and metros with more deaths than births in red:
Raymond James scooped up two RIA firms (FA Magazine)
St. Petersburg, FL-based Raymond James added two RIA affiliates to its Investment Advisors Division, reports the FA Magazine team.
The firm now has approximately 6,700 advisors and total assets of approximately $500 billion.
A former JP Morgan team went solo (Financial Planning)
A former JP Morgan Securities advisory team with $300 million in assets under management created a new RIA that specifically caters to ultra-high-net-worth individuals in the sports, music, and entertainment industries, reports Ann Marsh.
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