September 20, 2007

Sheikdom shakedown: Dubai moves on Nasdaq

Well, folks, say goodbye to America and hello to Arabia. In a complex set of transactions, Dubai is moving to acquire 19.9 percent of the Nasdaq in New York, placing the Arab government in an ownership position of the key U.S. stock exchange and raising concerns in Congress.

As a result of the transaction, Dubai also will acquire 28 percent of the London Stock Exchange, one of the oldest and largest in the world.

The transaction is being made through Borse Dubai, a holding company 100-percent owned by the government of the Emirate of Dubai and controlled by Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum, the head of the Dubai ruling family.

According to its website, Borse Dubai was created Aug. 6 as the holding company for Dubai Financial Market and Dubai International Financial Exchange in a move to consolidate the Dubai government's two stock exchanges "as well as current investments in other exchanges, expanding Dubai's position as a global capital market hub."