Trump Pushes Saudi-Aramco to Go Public on NYSE

By Julia Zelinsky,
Money and Investing Writer

On Saturday, President Donald Trump encouraged Saudi Aramco to list its IPO with the NYSE.

Saudi Aramco is the world’s largest oil provider. Its valuation is predicted to be over 1 trillion, leading the Economist to call it “almost certainly the world’s most valuable company.” This state-owned business is preparing to launch what The Hill has called “the biggest initial public offering ever.” In 2018, this Saudi Arabian company plans to make 5% of its shares public domestically, but is also expected to list on at least one foreign stock exchange.

In terms of market value, the New York Stock exchange is the world largest; its companies listed cumulatively give it a value over $21 trillion. A listing with Saudi Aramco would not be this stock exchange’s first, as the New York Stock Exchange has many other dual listings with international companies such as Alibaba (a Chinese technology business), Toyota and Honda (Japanese automakers), and Deutsche Bank and UBS (European banks).

President Trump has attempted to bring their stock to the New York Stock Exchange by tweeting that the he would “very much appreciate Saudi Arabia doing their IPO of Aramco with the New York Stock Exchange,” and he included that this listing would be “important to the United States!”

Past presidents have reaped the benefits of the New York Stock Exchange’s financial success, and even Presidents Ronald Reagan and George W. Bush have visited its floor. However, it is an unusual occurrence for a president to offer his opinion on where a company lists its shares, as that is the business’s private decision.

Nonetheless, President Trump has expressed his thoughts and is making a public effort to bring the Saudi Arabian oil company’s shares to the New York Stock Exchange
President Trump’s close relations with Saudi Arabia may help increase the chances of Saudi Aramco listing with the New York Stock Exchange, as just last summer, the president visited Saudi Arabia to make a defense deal worth $110 billion with King Salman. According to Saudi Aramco CEO Amin Nasser, the trip was “very successful” in strengthening United States and Saudi relations, and the Saudi’s “enjoyed” the president’s visit.

While many other major cities have been pushing for these shares, some concerns may arise from the company’s unclear finances; shareholders may call for transparency from Saudi Aramco. Many European and United States’ exchanges will also bring heavy regulations and disclosure requirements.

These demands and regulations have the potential to lead to complications in this international listing. Despite these foreseeable problems, the company’s shares are still greatly desired, and its decision is being closely watched.

Neither Saudi Aramco or the New York Stock Exchange has made any comments on the status of this company’s shares, but stockholders are listening for any updates.

 

A version of this article appeared in the Tuesday, November 7th print edition.

Contact Julia at
julia.elaine1029@gmail.com

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