In this section, we provide links to recent media coverage of Islamic Investment and Finance issues. We focus on mainstream media, and specially the western sources, since there has been a historic lack of coverage in these areas.
Source: Detroit NewsDate: 21 December 2004Author: Karen DybisTitle: Banks offer no-interest options for MuslimsHighlights:
Traditional home loans go against beliefs in the Koran for devout followers.
Source: Arab NewsDate: 25 June 2002Author: Molouk Y. Ba-IsaTitle: Coverage of the Muslim-Investor.com web site
Highlights:If you are completely clueless about Islamic finance and don't even understand suchterms as Shariah, haram and zakah, then proceed directly to the Muslim Investor(muslim-investor.com). The goal of the site is, "to help Muslims help themselvesand each other by getting rich in an Islamically correct way." This is an excellentsite for anyone who needs to know the basics of Islamic finance. The site discussesall sorts of financial transactions and advises on their acceptability from an Islamicpoint of view. It gives links to novice tutorials on investment and has a specialsection for Muslim entrepreneurs looking for venture capital. Do not miss the highlyeducational topics, "Pitfalls of Islamic Banking and Investment," and "Be a Millionaire."It also refers to other web sites about Islamic Investment and Finance.
Source: The Toledo BladeDate: 9 June 2001Author: Judy TarjanyiTitle: Funds faithful to Islamic law
Highlights:An article on the growing market for Islamic Investment, and how is it different from conventionalinvestment. Mentions our Muslim-Investor.com web site.
Source: The Daily HeraldDate: 18 October 2000Author: S.A. MawhorrTitle: Muslims face Challenge
Highlights:An overview of how Muslims in the USA are trying to invest in accordance withIslamic principles.
Source: Financial TimesDate: 4 September 2000Author: Farhan BokhariTitle: In the interest of Islam
An overall informative article, despite its focusing on one country (Pakistan). It providesa broad idea on what Islamic Finance is about.
Source: Bloomberg.com - Bloomberg NewsDate: 30 August 2000Author: Katherine BurtonTitle: Islamic Investors Get More Choices This Year: Mutual Funds
The article covers new Mutual Funds that are based on the Dow Jones Islamic MarketsIndex that are available this year. These include an Index Fund launched by Allied Asset Advisors and (later this year), Azzad Index Fund. Check our Mutual Funds section for more details.
Source: Detroit NewsDate: 21 August 2000Author: Melissa PreddyTitle: Muslims embrace principles that teach financial self-discipline
Islamic principles of investing are getting more attention lately in the financial world... The concepts come from the laws of the Koran, but people of any faith may find food for thought in the teachings of financial self-discipline...
The article also mentions this site, Muslim-Investor.com as one of severalreferences on more information on the subject.
Source: Council on American Islamic RelationsDate: 21 July 2000Author: Hanif CrutchfieldTitle: Minnesota County Approves Interest-Free Real Estate Contracts
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MINNESOTA COUNTY APPROVES INTEREST-FREE REAL ESTATE CONTRACTS
(MINNEAPOLIS, MINN., 7/21/2000) The Hennepin County (Minn.) Board of Commissioners has unanimously approved a real estate contract that permits interest-free purchase of tax-forfeited properties. The initiative was sponsored by the Minnesota chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), a Washington-based Islamic advocacy group. (Islamic beliefs prohibit dealing in interest.)
CAIR Minnesota Director Hanif Crutchfield worked with Hennepin County Assistant Attorney Robert Burck to jointly draft the interest-free contract. Sheikh Waleed Edrees Meneese, Professor of Islamic Studies at American Open University in Virginia, the Imam of Dar Al-Farooq Masjid in Minneapolis and Sheik Ali Alsalooss of Qatar University provided religious guidance during the drafting process. The contract is based on the Islamic concept of Bai-al-Ajal, or purchase over time using installment payments.
The Islamic advocacy group coordinated public awareness of the effort and arranged testimony in support of the contract at a public hearing before the County Commissioners in June.
Patrick O'Connor, the Hennepin County Auditor and Treasurer of Taxpayer Services Department, supported the interest-free contract and sponsored it through the approval process.
"This contract is a major step forward for Islamic real estate contract finance in the United States. It will allow Muslims and other interest-adverse communities to acquire homes from the county without compromising their religious principles," said Crutchfield. He added that county officials clearly demonstrated their commitment to accommodating the religious beliefs of the citizens of Minnesota.
"We encourage other counties in Minnesota and around the country to follow this precedent by adopting similar types of interest-free contracts," said Crutchfield.
The interest-free contract provides for installment payments over ten years for the auction purchase of any tax-forfeited residential or non-agricultural commercial property in Hennepin County. No credit approvals are needed and there are no income requirements. A 20 percent down payment is required, and single annual installment payments are due each year. The county waives the normal annual interest charge, but will increase the purchase price of the property in order to recapture a portion of what it forfeits in interest income.
The County will also issue an annual cash rebate to the buyer to purge any excess profits that it realizes as a result of such increased purchase price. Partial prepayments are credited to the next annual installment payment due. Early payoffs are allowed without penalty. The County charges a one-time $75 administrative fee to cover the manual processing of the contract.
The "Halal Contract for Purchase of Tax-Forfeited Property" (formerly known as the "Alternative Financing for Sale of Tax-Forfeited Residential Property to Persons of Interest-Adverse Cultures") is expected to be available to purchasers in mid-August, 2000.
CONTACT: Hanif Crutchfield, CAIR Minnesota at 612-334-9395, Fax (800) 861-3686 E-Mail: Hanif CrutchfieldTo view the Hennepin County Commission Approval visit this pageon theirweb site.
Source: American BankerDate: 13 June 2000Author: Craig WokerTitle: Michigan Startup plans 'Mortgages' for Muslims
Highlights:"Organizers of a planned bank in a Detroit suburb want to attract the area's Muslims with a product few banks would dare to offer --interest-free financing for homes.
"Assuming it gains regulatory approval, Amana Bank plans to open in East Dearborn by December with an initial capitalization of up to $9 million. Soon after, Amana -- which means 'trust' in Arabic -- plans to begin offering a mortgage-type product for Muslims, whose religion prohibits them from paying interest..."
Source: ForbesDate: 12 June 2000Author: Richard HellerTitle: Shari'ah Says
Highlights:Nice article covering mainly IslamiQ.com and Dr. Hasnita Hasim, its CEO. It alsodescribes the general principles of Islamic Investment.
Source: Wall Street Journal InteractiveAuthors: Sarah McBrideDate: 17 May 2000Title: Islamic Funds Proliferate
Again our site is mentioned "That... web site is excellent on general Islamic investing principles, but it is very U.S.-oriented on product facts." Note that this is a Wall Street Journal Interactive article. If you are a subscriber to the Wall Street Journal, you can access it on their site. The article is also available on Quicken and AOL web sites (the above link is accessible directly fromyour browser. No registration required). In general, the article covers IslamicInvestment from a Western perspective.
Source: Newsweek InternationalAuthors: Barbara Koh and Carla PowerDate: 15 May 2000Title: Money Under a Mattress - Islamic finance is getting huge, says IslamiQ.com
This article mentions our Muslim-Investor.com among sites that "...are also helping construct a community of Islamic investors." It touches on the basics of Islamic Investing, and covers IslamiQ.com and interviews Dr. Hasnita Hashim, CEO and co-founder of IslamiQ.com. It also quotes Yusuf Talal DeLorenzo, member of the Sharia Advisory Board of the Dow Jones Islamic Index, as well as Rushdi Siddiqui, the manager of that index. Mostly positive and worth reading.
A scanned image from the print version is also available in PDF format. You need Adobe Acrobat to read it. It is not very clear, so you have to zoom in.
Source: DITNetDate: 16 April 2000Title: DLJdirect-eUnion Offers Access to Online Broking to Fourteen Middle Eastern and North African Countries
DLJ, a Wall Street heavy weight joins with Bahrain's Capital Union to offer online brokerage services to the Arab world.
Source: The Star LedgerAuthor: Sam AliDate: 16 April 2000Title: Investing on Faith
Another American media coverage. "Muslims looking for religious-based financial alternatives are starting to emerge as a serious and growing niche market.
Source: Financial TimesAuthor: Jane CroftDate: 27 March 2000Title: Muslim financial site launches
More coverage of IslamiQ.com launch as a web portal for Muslims.
Source: Associated Press / ReutersAuthor: N/ADate: 27 March 2000Title: Islamiq.com Launches Site With Islamic Principles
Covers IslamiQ.com launch as a web portal for Muslims.
Source: Al Ahram Newspaper (Egypt)Author: Ed CropleyDate: 27 March 2000Title: Islamic dot com goes on-line for Muslim Investors
Covers IslamiQ.com launch.
Source: Associated PressAuthor: Nina RizzoDate: 26 March 2000Title: Dow Jones Offers Islamic Course
Covers the Dow Jones University's announcement of the course "Principles of Islamic Investment", what areas Islam doesn't allow investment in, and mentionsSaturna's Islamic Mutual Funds.
Source: Al Ahram Newspaper (Egypt)Author: Atef AbdallaDate: 18 March 2000Title: After the DJ Islamic Market, internet course on Islamic Investment
The leading newspaper in Egypt covers the Dow Jones University's announcement of the course "Principles of Islamic Investment".
Source: Morning StarAuthor: Dan CullotonDate: 15 March 2000Title: Profiting According to the Words of the Prophet
American Muslims have long faced a dilemma when trying to invest.
... the United States also offers a dearth of investment options that comply ...
... at least two investment boutiques plan to offer funds that conform to Islamic tenets this year.
... "A lot of companies are stepping in to fill niches," said Morningstar.com analyst Emily Hall.
There appears to be room for more players in this area.
More than a dozen firms, including at least two in the UnitedStates, have bought licenses to Dow Jones' Islamic indexes so theycan fashion their own funds ...
Islamic investing resembles other modes of moral and religious money management in that Islamic law forbids investments in tobacco, weapons, alcohol, gambling, or pornography ...
Dow Jones says back testing shows its U.S. Islamic index would have beaten the S&P 500's five-year average annual return by 27.2% to 24.2%.
Source: LA TimesAuthor: Marla DickersonDate: 17 March 1999Title: The Price of Piety in Islam
Highlights:Religious law forbids paying or receiving interest, eliminatingconventional credit as an option. However, some devout Muslims find financing through special lease-to-own deals.
Also discusses United Bank of Kuwait, American Finance House, Home Financing (Manzil USA), and other matters.
Source: Washington PostAuthor: Yuki NoguchiDate: 28 October 1999Page: E01Title: MATCHING FAITH AND FINANCES; ALTERNATIVES TO LOANS CATER TO AREA MUSLIMS
"It would make financial sense for Sajeed Jaweed and his wife to buy ahouse, but for the past five years they've been renting a two-bedroomapartment in Burtonsville instead.
"After seven years of making mortgage payments, Maha Badir and her husbandwithdrew all of their retirement savings to pay off the loan on theirRockville home.
"Badir and Jaweed, like many among the local Muslim community, made thosechoices because, under Islamic law, paying or charging interest isconsidered riba, or usury--and a high sin. And conventional banking offersno alternatives to the interest-bearing loan.
"But as the Islamic community in the Washington region grows, companies arepreparing to introduce financial service options that adhere to Muslimethical and religious laws governing personal business dealings, especiallythose barring interest payments..."