June 7, 2018 / 6:23 PM / a year ago

UPDATE 1-Saudi Finance Ministry appoints five local banks to deal in securities

(Adds details)

RIYADH, June 7 (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia’s Finance Ministry signed an agreement on Thursday to appoint five local banks as primary dealers in local government securities, the ministry said.

The five institutions are Alinma Bank, Bank al-Jazira, National Commercial Bank, Samba Financial Group and Saudi British Bank, a ministry statement said.

In April, Saudi authorities listed riyal government bonds on the Saudi Stock Exchange for the first time, part of efforts to spur secondary market debt trading. A total of 204.4 billion riyals ($54.5 billion) of bonds were listed.

Future issues of local currency government bonds will also be listed, encouraging investment by non-bank investors such as mutual funds and insurers. (Reporting By Marwa Rashad Writing By Maha El Dahan, Editing by Peter Graff, William Maclean)

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