A Guide to Islamic Finance

Author/Publisher:  Munawar Iqbal
Descriptions: A Guide to Islamic Finance By Munawar Iqbal Although the roots of Islamic finance lie in ancient Islamic principles, the development of Islamic finance as an industry is relatively new.

Whilst conventional commercial banks provide financial intermediation services on the basis of interest (charged and paid), the basic premise of Islamic finance is the prohibition of interest. Islamic bankers have developed a number of instruments that can perform financial intermediation functions without the involvement of interest. From a small banking experiment in rural Egypt during the 1960s, Islamic finance is currently expanding at a rate of 10-15% per annum.

It now represents a vast global practice and the preferred channel of banking for one fifth of humanity. Rapid growth is expected for this industry and Islamic finance offers bright prospects for those involved. One of the reasons for this optimism is the huge amount of petro-dollars (estimated to be US$1.3 trillion) currently afloat due to the post Iraq war increase in oil prices. As a result of which, the number of high net worth individuals in the Middle East (of whom the majority are Muslim) has increased by 9.5% over the past few years. Consequently there is tremendous scope for developing and marketing new Islamic financial instruments and Shari’ah compliant money managers are extremely well positioned. In order to take advantage of this growth, familiarity with basic principles of Islamic finance is essential. The author of this new report, Munawar Iqbal, Dean of the School of Islamic Banking and Finance in International Islamic University, Islamabad does not assume such familiarity. He presents the fundamentals in a way that non-Muslim, non-Arabic speaking professionals may quickly grasp the principles. An extensive glossary of Arabic terms is also included. By reading this concise report you will quickly get up-to-speed on this booming financial sector. Islamic Finance will help you: • Become acquainted with the theory, practice and limitations of Islamic banking; • Understand how to develop products for the Islamic financial industry; • Grasp the objectives and sources of Islamic law and the basic guidelines for business contracts; • Evaluate and implement the Islamic banking model and the financial modes presently in use by Islamic financial institutions; • Learn about Islamic fund management and insurance; • Consider future prospects and opportunities of the Islamic financial industry. Due to the success of Islamic banking, many conventional commercial banks are now offering their clients Islamic financial services. Several mega multinational banks such as Citibank, HSBC, Deutsche Bank, are already actively involved in Islamic finance. This is recommended reading for anyone hoping to take advantage of the boom in Islamic finance. Table of contents List of Tables and Graphs Preface Glossary of Arabic Terms List of Abbreviations Introduction

1. Objectives and Sources of Islamic Law Sources of Islamic Law Revealed Sources Sources Inferred Through Human Reasoning Maqasid al-Shari’ah

2. Principles of Business Contracts in Islamic Law Islamic View of Business and Economic Activities Guidance from the Qur'an on Earning Wealth What is Allowed in Wealth Creation 'Ten Commandments' with Respect to Business Contracts

3. The Islamic Banking Model What is an Islamic Bank? Distinguishing Features of Islamic Banking

4. Modes of Finance being used by Islamic Banks Variable Return Modes Trade Based Modes Theory versus Practice with Respect to the Use of Various Modes Secondary Market Instruments

5. How to Develop New Islamic Banking Products Scope for Financial Engineering in Islamic Finance How New Products can be Developed Permissibility of Hybrid Contracts The Five Cs of Islamic Financial Engineering

6. The Practice of Islamic Banking Country Experiences with Islamic Banking Islamic Banks Working in Competitive Environments Islamic Banking Windows in Conventional Banks

7. Evaluation of Islamic Banking Growth Analysis Ratio Analysis

8. Islamic Fund Management Permissibility of Investment Funds Conditions for Participating in Equity Funds Scope for Islamic Investment in Equity Markets Islamic Investment Funds in Practice

9. Islamic Insurance Reasons and Means to Insure Is Commercial Insurance Permissible in Islam? Stock Insurance Companies’ Business Model Objection Raised against Stock Insurance Model Conclusion on Permissibility of Insurance Islamic Alternative to Commercial Insurance: Takaful

10. The Future of Islamic Finance Need to Broaden the Base Preparing for Increased Competition Need to Increase the Size of Islamic Banks Need to Diversify in the Use of Various Modes Fulfilling the Long Term Finance Needs Areas of Potential Growth The Way Forward Conclusion Index.