The Shari'ah Advisory Council of Bank Negara Malaysia gave the go-ahead for wa'd (unilateral promise) to be used to hedge against currency fluctuations as long as there is no compensation paid for the wa'd, which would make it a bilateral wa'd. The promise is binding on the promisor.
Rusdhi Siddiqui's latest article tackles the area of Islamic finance news, which I agree does have too little depth behind it. Bloomberg articles (not to pick on them alone) give the bullet points and then re-spout market statistics with too little context. Other news outlets just string together a few quotes with generalities about "Islamic finance is designed to avoid interest, etc". If this blog does anything, I hope it provides a current and critical look at the Islamic finance industry. It certainly has an inherent bias towards the Islamic finance industry, but I have also been critical of the "party line" talking point (for a while at least) that Islamic finance was not harmed by the credit crisis. And thankfully, there are other reporters out there who take stands against things that are either ridiculous Panglossian ideas or products that too cynically avoid the restrictions that are the heart of the Islamic finance industry. However, it is always a good time to remind oneself to think critically.
- Kiplinger has an interview with Monem Salam and Nicholas Kaiser of the Amana Funds.
- Details about the Dubai World restructuring are coming and I expect more to come out as the process of implementing the restructuring proceeds.
- Mushtak Parker wrote an article about the growth of Islamic ETFs.
- Pakistan's government plans to sell sukuk by the end of the month. The sukuk are expected to carry a maturity of less than on year.
- Despite many suggestions that Islamic finance could become viable in Russia, there are few Islamic financial institutions in the country.