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Oil up and world shares retreat on Saudi purge

Monday, November 06, 2017 - 01:51

Brent Crude prices have hit a two-year high, while shares in some of the world's biggest companies have fallen, after Saudi Arabia’s crown prince cemented his power through a crackdown on corruption which netted the country's most well-known international investor Prince Alwaleed bin Talal. Kate King reports.

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He's previously been described as the Warren Buffet of the Middle East, and he's now a key reason why shares in some of the world's biggest companies have plunged. Billionaire Prince Alwaleed bin Talal, the King's nephew and Saudi Arabia's best-known international investor, is among dozens of prominent people arrested as part of anti-corruption crackdown by the Kingdom. (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) POLITICAL ANALYST AND JOURNALIST, MANSOUR AL-AMEER, SAYING: "There is no doubt that it soothes the anger of the regular citizen who felt that such names and senior leaders who appeared in the list were immune from legal accountability. " Prince Alwaleed owns investment firm Kingdom Holding - its share price has fallen a further 5 percent after an 8 percent fall on Sunday He has stakes in 21st Century Fox, Citigroup, Apple, Accor and Twitter among others - the size of which are unknown. Numerous Princes, ministers and former ministers have been detained. They're facing charges of money laundering, bribery, extorting officials and taking advantage of public office for personal gain. The purge was undertaken by a newly created anti-corruption committee, headed by Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman - the King's son. (SOUNDBITE) WILSON KING INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT, HEAD OF RESEARCH, RICHARD HUNTER, SAYING: "He is pretty well regarded amongst the younger generation and could be seen as something of a leader taking Saudi forward over a very fast changing world." So far oil appears to be the big winner - Brent Crude hit a two year high of 62 dollars a barrel, with question marks over whether the world's largest oil producer will reform its oil policy - while shaking up decades old business practices. But a life of luxury hasn't yet been scuppered. Those arrested are reportedly being held here, at the Ritz Carlton - in Riyadh.

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Oil up and world shares retreat on Saudi purge

Monday, November 06, 2017 - 01:51