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We are very excited

about the launch of

the next generation of

EcoStruxure Building

because it offers so

many advances for both

customers and partners

to re-invent buildings.

Laurent Bataille

Executive Vice President

EcoBuilding Division

Schneider launches

first open innovation

platform of buildings


Schneider Electric,

the leader in digital transfor-

mation of energy management

and automation, on Sunday an-

nounced the next generation of

EcoStruxure Building, the indus-

try’s first open innovation plat-

form of buildings.

EcoStruxure Building’s open,

end-to-end IP architecture en-

ables quick, connectivity of IoT

devices for faster commission-

ing and changes; provides for

edge control and collaboration

between building systems and

third-party systems and devices.

Its apps, analytics and services

layer enables advance analysis

and condition-based real-time


EcoStruxure Building im-

proves building value offering

building owners and real estate

professionals up to a 15% premi-

um on their buildings and up to

6% additional rental value.

For developers, systems inte-

grators and members of Schnei-

der Electric’s EcoXpert partner

program, EcoStruxure Building

is designed to enable up to 30%

faster deployment through:

• Smart Connector frame-

work for creating new system

and app functionality

• Enterprise Central allows

for 10x more scalability to easily

execute site expansions

• Mobile commissioning, en-

gineering efficiencies, and devel-

opment applications for speed,

repeatability and consistency

“Schneider Electric was a

clear break-away leader in our

Facility Optimization Software

report this year” said Derrek

Clarke, industry analyst, Ver-

dantix. “Now, with the next gen-

eration of EcoStruxure Building,

Schneider Electric offers even

more innovation to take building

operational efficiency to the next

level. Firms with complex op-

erations that seek to future-proof

their building system invest-

ments should shortlist Schneider

Electric among their considered


New elements of EcoStruxu-

re Building include:

• EcoStruxure Building Ad-

visor application automatically

delivers condition-based main-

tenance across multiple sites to

resolve up to 80% of building is-

sues remotely, decrease unsched-

uled maintenance by as much

as 29%, reduce energy costs by

up to 30% and reduce occupant

complaints on average of 33%.

• EcoStruxure Building Op-

erations 2.0 is enhanced with

best-in-class cybersecurity and

delivers a customized native user

experience through a responsive

WebStation and mobile apps to

engineer once, deploy-all-devices

and provide mobile access on the

go. Enterprise Central superviso-

ry server enhances the monitor-

ing and control capability from

200+ servers to 2500+ servers for

large and multi-site enterprises.

The open, standards based plat-

Buying fatigue hits oil, gold

pops back above $1,300/oz

By Ole S Hansen

Head of Commodity

Strategy, Saxo Bank


Commodities have

outperformed other classes so

far this year. Rising oil prices

have steadily been feeding into

an increase in headline inflation.

These developments together

with increased geopolitical and

weather concerns have all helped

support investor demand for

broad-based commodities expo-


Rising commodity prices led

by crude oil have started to feed

into headline inflation with its

subsequent negative impact on

bonds, often the biggest compo-

nent in a diversified portfolio.

The Bloomberg Commodity

Index reached its highest level

since 2015 this past week and is

currently up by around 4% year-

to-date. This means that it is still

some distance behind the energy-

heavy S&P GSCI index which has

clocked up a 12% return so far.

This is primarily due to crude

oil’s surge to a 3½-year high on

supply worries related to Ven-

ezuela and Iran.

This past week, however, it

was not crude oil and products

that provided the gains. Instead,

the grains sector and natural

gas both found support from

hot weather across the US. This

comes while raising demand for

natural gas from power plants to

meet increased demand for cool-

ing already dry weather condi-

tions in the US and around the

world fuels concerns about re-

duced crop production this year.

Precious metals recovered

following a few weeks of head-

winds caused by rising yields

and a stronger dollar. The geo-

political focus provided renewed

support after President Trump

cancelled his June meeting with

North Korea’s Kim Jong Un. A

sell-off in emerging market cur-

rencies, not least Turkey, togeth-

er with political developments in

Italy and Spain also helped give

gold a boost.

Precious metals, led by gold,

have recently been caught in the

crosshairs of a rising dollar and

US 10-year bond yields climb-

ing through the psychological

3% level. After dropping below

$1300/oz on May 15 gold has since

managed to find support at $1386/

oz, a key technical support level.

The return to relative safety

above $1300/oz has been sup-

ported by renewed focus on geo-

political developments. Adding

to this the Federal Open Market

Committee signaling that they’re

in no hurry to hike rates more ag-

gressively, despite the prospect

of rising inflation.

Faced with a deteriorating

short-term price outlook, hedge

funds, which are often more sen-

sitive to adverse price changes

than longer term investors, have

been cutting bullish futures bets

to a ten-month low at 31,000 lots,

well below the five-year aver-

age of 105,000 lots. Longer-term

investors meanwhile, who often

use exchange-traded funds, have

shown a great deal of resilience.

Throughout the recent weak-

ness they have maintain a total

holding close to a five-year high.

It confirms our view that while

funds must react to short-term

price developments the limited

exposure seen now could act as

the engine that takes gold higher

once the technical outlook im-

proves enough to warrant buyers

to return.

Gold has managed to stabi-

lize and climb higher after find-

ing support at the important level

of $1286/oz. The return above

$1300/oz and more importantly a

weekly close above $1307/oz, the

200-day moving average is likely

to set the stage for additional


The extension of the crude oil

rally following Trump’s decision

last month of unilaterally aban-

doning the Iran nuclear deal has

begun to run out of steam. This

after Brent crude oil reached

and found resistance at $80/b, a

level last seen in late 2014. Faced

with emerging signs of consumer

unease about the rapid rise in

recent months Saudi Arabia and

Russia have both begun talking

about rolling back some of the

production cuts that during the

past year successfully have sup-

ported a rebalancing of the global

oil market.

The need to supply additional

barrels to maintain a stable mar-

ket has also become more appar-

ent with the ongoing drop in Ven-

ezuelan production and the so

far unquantifiable future impact

of US sanctions on Iran’s export


In Venezuela the pace of de-

cline of oil production is accel-

erating and following last week’s

sham election which saw Maduro

regain power the outlook for the

country looks incredible dire.

Adding additional sanctions from

the US there is a risk that produc-

tion could slump to just 1 million

b/d, from 1.5 million currently.

When sanctions hit Iran back

in 2012 its exports fell by more

than 1 million barrels. Without

the support from Europe, Russia

and China the impact of Trump’s

new sanctions which will take

effect before yearend is very dif-

ficult to quantify at this stage.

Considering US ‘friends’ from

Europe to Japan and South Korea

currently buy around one-third

of Iran’s export some impact on

global supply cannot be avoided.

On that basis, Opec and Rus-

sia which have kept 1.7 million

barrels/day away from the mar-

ket since early 2017 are likely to

step in sooner than expected to

stabilize the market and prevent

it from rallying to levels where

global demand begins to be nega-

tively impacted. At first the least

controversial decision could be

for the group to raise production

by 300-500,000 barrels/day to

meet the shortfall from Venezu-

ela thereby bring the compliance

back to 100% from the +150%

seen in recent months.

The short-term focus will

center on the June 22 Opec meet-

ing in Vienna. The following day

the organization will meet with

the non-Opec group, especially

Russia, who have supported the

production curbs.

Watch what they do, not what

they say, has been a very good de-

scription of hedge funds’ behav-

ior during the past four weeks.

Since Trump’s Iran announce-

ment hedge funds and money

managers have been actively

selling into the rally thereby cut-

ting what a few months ago was

a record combined long in Brent

and WTI crude oil. In the week

to May 15 the combined net-long

dropped below one million lots

to a five-months low.

The price behavior this past

week further strengthened the

belief that the crude oil rally, at

least for now, was running out of

steam and needed consolidation.

Two consecutive attempts to

drive Brent crude oil above $80/b

failed quite spectacularly as sell-

ers emerged. News that both

Saudi Arabia and Russia both

suggested easing production cuts

further added to the sense that

the focus for now has turned to

one of consolidation.

From a technical perspec-

tive Brent crude oil is currently

consolidating more than its cor-

recting. However, a break below

$75.40/b could change this per-

ception and help attract addition-

al long liquidation.


MONDAY 28 MAY 2018,



UAE residents keeping better track of finances


UAE residents

are keeping better track of their

money than four years ago, and

fewer are living beyond their

means, according to the “mon-

eysmart index”, which Abu Dhabi

Islamic Bank has launched as part

of its financial wellness program.

The moneysmart index pro-

vides fresh insight into trends

related to financial wellness, in-

cluding saving, debt management

and investment. It is based on pe-

riodic surveys of 1,300 UAE resi-

dents earning over AED10,000 per

month, with the most recent study

comparing responses with an un-

published benchmark survey in


The results help ADIB to de-

liver relevant advice directly to its

customers, and to the wider pub-

lic through the www.moneysmart.

ae community, where matters of

personal finance are openly dis-

cussed between members, and

volunteer experts.

In the most recent survey, 56%

of respondents said they “keep

very close track” of their finances,

up from 52% in 2014, suggesting

that people are being more care-

ful about budgeting and manag-

ing their personal finances. Some

38% said they had a good idea of

how much they spend, but are not

precise, compared to 37% in 2014.

And only 6% said they paid no at-

tention at all, down from 12% in


In addition, 57% of UAE resi-

dents pay their expenses every

month and have some money left

over, compared to 55% in 2014.

Some 40% say they have little left

after paying all their expenses,

versus 36% before. Fewer people

are living beyond their means,

with 3% saying they spend more

than they earn each month, com-

pared to 9% in 2014.

51% of people – say they save

most months, compared to 24% in

2014. But the proportion of people

who say they never or rarely save

has dropped to 5% from 14% in


ADIB’s vice chairman and act-

ing Chief Executive Officer Kha-

mis Buharoon said: “What we see

in the ADIB moneysmart index

is that more people want to take

better care of their personal fi-

nances. That is good news, and as

a responsible bank, ADIB aims to

empower our customers to make

the right financial decisions. We

have run a financial education

program in schools and universi-

ties for many years, but ADIB has

now taken this to another level

through the


munity, where anyone can join the

conversation on personal finance

and receive advice from experts,

and take advantage of fun tools

such as financial personality type

test. With our customer base now

at one million people, ADIB can

make a significant contribution

to personal financial health in the


More people with debt are

finding it difficult to manage,

with 48% saying they “sometimes

struggle” to make monthly install-

ments, compared with 31% in 2014.

The survey found that bank

consumers are not aware of the

rates that they are paying. For ex-

ample, 59% know the rate on their

personal finance and only 55%

know the rate charged by their

bank card.

Philip King, Global Head of

Retail Banking at ADIB, said: “It is

encouraging to see that more peo-

ple in the UAE are looking more

closely at managing their finances

and savings. However, it is clear

that people would benefit from

debt management advise. I would

encourage anyone who is having

difficulty servicing their debts to

seek advice from ADIB or other

banks that run debt consolidation

programs and provide debt man-

agement advice to make repay-

ments more manageable. We’re

keen to get the message out that

however much you earn, care-

ful budgeting can help you to put

some money aside every month.



nity is somewhere you can go to

get information from peers and

experts. You will also be able to

take a simple test to assess your

knowledge and financial wellness

and compare it with your peers in

the UAE.”

The survey clearly shows that

what people are doing with their

savings is changing. More people

are keeping their savings in the

bank, while other investment op-

tions have become less popular.

Nearly half of respondents

(46%) said they kept their savings

in cash or deposits, up from 39%

in 2014. There has been a big drop

in people investing in their own

businesses – 28% of savers, com-

pared to 56% previously. And 24%

of people are putting their money

into real estate - 16% in publicly

traded shares and 9% put their

savings into mutual funds.

The three most cited reasons

given to save are for emergen-

cies (58% of respondents), home

ownership (44%) and children’s

education (41%). In addition, 40%

said they saved for retirement and

36% said they saved for holidays.

The moneysmart survey

found that UAE residents value

financial advice most for how to

plan for life events, how to build

savings and planning for retire-

ment. People tend to seek many

sources of information, with face-

to-face advice favored by most,

but blogs, websites and apps gain-

ing ground.

Banks are the preferred source

of financial advice, with 25% of

people saying they were “very

likely” to use them, followed by

family and friends, with 22%. A

reputable online community was

the third most favored source,

with 21% said they were very like-

ly to access advice in this way.

Self-help books, personal fi-

nance websites, and newspapers

were also cited as useful sources,

while certified, independent fi-

nancial advisers were only cho-

sen by 7% of respondents as their

main source of advice.

In general, the perception of

banks in the UAE is positive, with

75% of respondents trusting banks

to do the right thing by their cus-

tomers and behave responsibly.

Seven in 10 people said they were

more likely to use a bank that be-

haved responsibly, supported the

local community, took a sustain-

able approach to banking, pro-

vided advice on managing money,

and provided unbiased invest-

ment information.

ADIB has run a financial edu-

cation program since 2011, tak-

ing its message on responsible

personal money management to

schools and colleges, as well as

to popular meeting places such as

malls and community events.

The bank’s

website community provides dis-

cussion and useful content to help

people budget, manage their debt,

and save for the future. The web-

site serves as an online platform

for people to gain insights into

best practice, share experiences,

hear from experts, as well earn

cash rewards on being active con-


— SG

form using Smart Connector

framework enables systems in-

tegrators to build innovative ap-

plications and offers actionable

insights through simple to set-up

reporting and dashboards. It also

includes additional IP integrated

offers for commercial buildings


• SmartX IP Controllers and

SmartX Living Space Sensors are

next generation multipurpose

field controller and sensors that

leverage industry standards and

IP-based open protocols for 30%

increase in engineering efficien-

cy and 20% faster commission-

ing leveraging the eCommission

mobile app.

“We are very excited about

the launch of the next genera-

tion of EcoStruxure Building be-

cause it offers so many advances

for both customers and partners

to re-invent buildings,” com-

mented Laurent Bataille, Execu-

tive Vice President EcoBuilding

Division. “It helps to extract and

enhance efficiency, not only en-

ergy efficiency but integration,

operational and engineering ef-

ficiency. It enhances comfort

and productivity of building

occupants, which is key to hir-

ing and retaining talent. Finally,

because EcoStruxure Building is

scalable and future-ready with

its IP capabilities, it helps build-

ing owners and developers to in-

crease the value of their real esta

EcoStruxure Building is part of

Schneider Electric’s EcoStruxure

Architecture. EcoStruxure is our

IoT-enabled, plug and play, open,

interoperable, architecture and

platform. EcoStruxure delivers

enhanced value around safety, re-

liability, efficiency, sustainability,

and connectivity. EcoStruxure

leverages advancements in IoT,

mobility, sensing, cloud, analyt-

ics and cybersecurity to deliver

Innovation at every level, from

Connected Products, Edge Con-

trol to Apps, Analytics & Ser-

vices. EcoStruxure has been de-

ployed in 480,000+ installations,

with the support of 20,000+ sys-

tem integrators, connecting over

1.5 million assets.

— SG

EcoStruxure Building Advisor