x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 24 January 2018

A soaring start to the year

A reader complains that a New Year's Eve party aboard the QE2 did not live up to expectations. Other letters deal with an air show, expensive baubles, and the local stock brokerage business.

One the streets and high above them, Abu Dhabi welcomed 2012 in style, a reader says. (Ravindranath K / The National)
One the streets and high above them, Abu Dhabi welcomed 2012 in style, a reader says. (Ravindranath K / The National)

I refer to the article Troubled brokerages face battle for survival (January 2). I think authorities need to take a multi-pronged approach to stabilise and boost the market. One of the key factors to survival of the brokerage industry is the upgrading of the stock market from frontier to emerging status. And the sooner the authorities amend the legislation to accommodate international participation, the sooner the market would stabilise.

It appears that supply has outstripped demand and the market is experiencing a correction as liquidity becomes scarce. A fresh injection of funds from external sources would certainly go a long way to boost investor confidence.

Authorities should also embark on a marketing campaign that targets investors and organisations alike. The public needs to be educated about investing in stocks and this could be achieved via the media and public seminars.

Efficient markets thrive on the availability of public information. I would like to see the publication of more corporate data - financial statements, mergers and acquisitions, market penetration, product development - which could be used by investors to make intelligent investment decisions.

Coupled with this is a need to deepen the stock market by encouraging more local and multinationals to register their shares on the exchange.

It's imperative that the authorities embark on a strategy to reinforce the strengths of the market and downplay misconceptions.

Randall Mohammed, Dubai

A new year's treat out of the sky

At around 4pm on New Year's Day, my family was just about to end a relaxing day on the Corniche beach in Abu Dhabi when we received a wonderful and unexpected bonus, in the form of a precision-flying demonstration by some aircraft of the UAE Air Force.

Their aerobatics had everyone on the beach grabbing their cameras. The best bit was when the planes climbed vertically in formation, trailing white smoke, and then curved off symmetrically in different directions, creating the smoke image of a stylised palm tree.

It was a treat. My family - and many others, no doubt - would like to thank the pilots who showed off their skill, and the officials who made the display possible.

Sylvia Boulet, Abu Dhabi

Confusion over magazine's target

Is M magazine aimed to cater to the small percentage of the very affluent among us?

Its hard not to flinch when one sees the stuff featured in the "M is all about" page including stuff like a coat that you could probably wear for the coldest day in winter here. For a day or two a year, the cost is prohibitive.

This week's M edition suggests some ways one could kick start the new year, including draining out one's entire wallet.

Then, the Instant Expert (December 28) on page 19 asks readers not to even share their dish with the neighbours to ensure that their wealth is not subtracted, among other pieces of advice. While the article is clearly tongue-in-cheek, it left a bad taste in my mouth.

The M must take into account the culture and sensitivities of the majority of readers here, who do not buyhappiness in the form of shoes that cost Dh16,000 or think they have conquered the world because they look beautiful. Wardah MK, Abu Dhabi


A dismayed VVIP aboard QE2 liner

I would like to give feedback regarding the New Year's Eve event aboard the Queen Elizabeth 2 (All aboard the QE2 for New Year's Eve, December 26).

As VVIP ticket holders, my husband and I feel that we were duped.

Music was supposed to begin at the cocktail time before boarding. Instead, it began at 10pm just as we were boarding. We stood around without music for two hours.

Worse, there was nothing different between the VIP and VVIP ticket holders. There was absolutely no preferential treatment for those who paid twice as much for tickets.

There was no direction or announcements of when entertainment would begin or be performing. I was left feeling lost and on my own trying to catch up with entertainment, always missing the beginning of the shows.

Worst of all, there were no celebrities or VIPs in attendance, which is why we paid for VVIP tickets.

I expected a typical cruise ship type buffet with ice sculptures, carved fruit, shrimp cocktail, crabs legs, chicken, steak, carving station. In other words, a five-star meal.

What we received for Dh12,000 a rather large - and very pricy - helping of new year's eve disappointment. Rebecca Fiala, Dubai