Skip to main content

GCC no longer immune to global market constraints: AI data

New report based on AI data shows companies in the Gulf region expect lower earnings this quarter.
Qatar gas

Gulf Cooperation Council companies are feeling the effects of the global economic slowdown, according to Iridium Advisors’ AI-powered report released today. 

The Dubai-based consultancy stated that its GCC Earnings Call Sentiment Index dropped 8% quarter-on-quarter to its lowest point since Q1 2021. 

“This is the first quarter in over a year that we have seen a marked decline in management sentiment,” said Oliver Schutzmann, the company’s CEO, about GCC company feelings towards earnings in Q3 2022. 

“While equity markets in the region have performed better than those in the US and Europe, we can’t discount the fact that regional equity markets are not immune to larger global market contractions,” he added, listing rising interest rates, inflationary pressures, oil price volatility and fears of recession as core causes. 

The UAE and Kuwait were the only two countries that showed a slight increase in sentiment. The strongest negative trends were seen in Oman and Bahrain, and to a lesser extent, Saudi Arabia. 

Real estate was the only sector where management teams showed a slight increase in sentiment.  Communication services and materials that include chemicals, construction materials and more, saw the largest decline.

AI accuracy?

The calculated index uses natural language processing technology called sentiment analysis, which incorporates AI to measure feelings from human speech or writing with a positive, negative, or neutral qualifier. 

Using this method, Iridium Advisors reported that it processed more than 1,300 GCC teleconference and webcast transcripts shared by oil and non-oil companies, which discuss their financial results for the reporting period of Oct. 1-Nov. 17, 2022. 

Sentiment analysis is not an exact science, and its accuracy varies, according to data collected by software service product provider MeaningCloud

GCC impact

Global growth is predicted to decline from 3.2% this year to about 2.7% next year, as the International Monetary Fund (IMF) expects one-third of the global economy to contract in 2023. 

The Middle East is feeling the constraint in credit and non-oil growth, even in Gulf markets. 

Inflation in the GCC region has risen steadily since mid-2021, reaching an 11-year high of 4.5% in July 2022, without the impact of VAT changes introduced in the UAE and Saudi Arabia in 2018 according to PwC’s Middle East Economy Watch

Despite this, oil exporters are being buoyed by fiscal surpluses that are expected to carry them through to 2027, except for Bahrain, even as non-oil sectors suffer.  

The most severe impact is felt by oil importers such as Egypt, Lebanon and Jordan, which are facing major economic difficulties and looking to the IMF, the GCC, and other donors for financial support.

Join hundreds of Middle East professionals with Al-Monitor PRO.

Business and policy professionals use PRO to monitor the regional economy and improve their reports, memos and presentations. Try it for free and cancel anytime.

Already a Member? Sign in


The Middle East's Best Newsletters

Join over 50,000 readers who access our journalists dedicated newsletters, covering the top political, security, business and tech issues across the region each week.
Delivered straight to your inbox.


What's included:
Our Expertise

Free newsletters available:

  • The Takeaway & Week in Review
  • Middle East Minute (AM)
  • Daily Briefing (PM)
  • Business & Tech Briefing
  • Security Briefing
  • Gulf Briefing
  • Israel Briefing
  • Palestine Briefing
  • Turkey Briefing
  • Iraq Briefing

Premium Membership

Join the Middle East's most notable experts for premium memos, trend reports, live video Q&A, and intimate in-person events, each detailing exclusive insights on business and geopolitical trends shaping the region.

$25.00 / month
billed annually

Become Member Start with 1-week free trial
What's included:
Our Expertise AI-driven

Memos - premium analytical writing: actionable insights on markets and geopolitics.

Live Video Q&A - Hear from our top journalists and regional experts.

Special Events - Intimate in-person events with business & political VIPs.

Trend Reports - Deep dive analysis on market updates.

All premium Industry Newsletters - Monitor the Middle East's most important industries. Prioritize your target industries for weekly review:

  • Capital Markets & Private Equity
  • Venture Capital & Startups
  • Green Energy
  • Supply Chain
  • Sustainable Development
  • Leading Edge Technology
  • Oil & Gas
  • Real Estate & Construction
  • Banking

We also offer team plans. Please send an email to and we'll onboard your team.

Already a Member? Sign in

Gulf Briefing Gulf Briefing

Gulf Briefing

Top GCC stories in your inbox each week

Trend Reports

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (4th R) attends a meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping (3rd L) at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on February 22, 2019. (Photo by HOW HWEE YOUNG / POOL / AFP) (Photo credit should read HOW HWEE YOUNG/AFP via Getty Images)

From roads to routers: The future of China-Middle East connectivity

A general view shows the solar plant in Uyayna, north of Riyadh, on March 29, 2018. - On March 27, Saudi announced a deal with Japan's SoftBank to build the world's biggest solar plant. (Photo by FAYEZ NURELDINE / AFP) (Photo credit should read FAYEZ NURELDINE/AFP via Getty Images)

Regulations on Middle East renewable energy industry starting to take shape

Start your PRO membership today.

Join the Middle East's top business and policy professionals to access exclusive PRO insights today.

Join Al-Monitor PRO Start with 1-week free trial