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(Reuters) – MSCI Inc upgraded Kuwaiti equities to its main emerging markets index on Tuesday, which could trigger $2.8 billion of inflows from passive funds.

MSCI, the world’s largest index provider, whose emerging-market group of indexes has about $1.8 trillion of assets tied to it, also said it will consult on the potential reclassification of the MSCI Iceland Index to Frontier Markets status.

Sebastien Lieblich, global head of equity solutions and chairman of the MSCI Equity Index Committee, said Kuwait’s Market Development Project has set the path for the “seamless” implementation of numerous regulatory and operational enhancements in the Kuwaiti equity market.

“These enhancements have significantly increased the accessibility level of the Kuwaiti equity market for international institutional investors and resulted in broad positive feedback from these investors on our reclassification proposal,” Lieblich said.

MSCI also announced the launch of a consultation to potentially reclassify the MSCI Iceland Index from Standalone Markets to Frontier Markets status. MSCI will announce the results of this consultation on or before Nov. 29.

Reporting by Jennifer Ablan; editing by Jonathan Oatis and Leslie Adler

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