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Dubai, December 11, 2012: Rasmala Investment Bank Ltd (“Rasmala”) has announced the release of its first sell-side Palestinian market report, “Palestine, Opportunities in Frontier Market”, covering the Palestinian market and the three largest listed stocks there: Paltel Group, Bank of Palestine, and PADICO. By publishing this report, Rasmala is considered the first GCC investment bank offering an in-depth outlook of this uncovered market. In this report, Rasmala initiates coverage on three stocks representing 56% of the total market cap of the Palestine Exchange: Paltel Group, Bank of Palestine and PADICO HOLDING. Rasmala believes this typical frontier market offers a compelling opportunity to invest in companies with strong fundamentals, relatively low multiples and high dividend yields. Paltel Group (Paltel) has a Buy recommendation and JOD6.10/share target price, suggesting 24% upside potential. Paltel, the bellwether of the Palestinian stock market, has a strong balance sheet and, in Rasmala’s view, can sustain a healthy dividend pay-out. Bank of Palestine has a Buy recommendation and a target price of US$3.55/share, suggesting 26% upside potential. Bank of Palestine is the largest listed bank in the Palestinian market and is also one of the largest listed companies on the Palestine Exchange, representing about 13% of the market cap of the index. PADICO HOLDING (PADICO), the third-largest listed stock on the Palestine Exchange, has a Hold recommendation and a target price of US$1.05. PADICO is a listed investment company that invests in vital economic sectors in Palestine.This report also covers other aspects related to the Palestinian market, such as: the Palestinian Exchange, macroeconomic perspectives, demographics, and some investment sectors. Commenting on the new Palestinian report, Mr. Anwar Abu Sbaitan, Chief Executive Officer of Rasmala, said: “This report is an important landmark for Rasmala in taking the initiative to cover the Palestinian market, which we believe is insufficiently covered and full of investment opportunities. Rasmala has already established the first Palestinian equity fund domiciled in Luxemburg in collaboration with Palestine Investment Fund (“PIF”), managing around USD 35 million as of November 2012. Now, Rasmala is taking another initiative by publishing a report covering this stock market, which will hopefully engender dialogues with potential investors.”
Rasmala is a leading regional Investment Banking Group, with offices in Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Oman and Egypt. Rasmala Holdings Ltd manages about $1 billion of assets for institutional and private clients. Rasmala specializes in asset management across MENA markets in both — conventional and sharia’a compliant strategies in the fixed income, money market and equity asset classes.