By Aduragbemi Omiyale
The Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed, has advised investors in the capital market to take advantage of initiatives introduced by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) aimed primarily to strengthen the market and accelerate development.
Mrs Ahmed gave this advice at the enlightenment workshop/investor clinic session with the Federal Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning and its agencies in Abuja on Wednesday.
The 10-year Master Plan initiatives include an e-dividend mandate system, Direct cash settlement, regularisation of multiple accounts, national investors protection fund, recapitalisation of capital market operators and complaints management framework, among others.
The Minister, who was represented by Mr Stephen Okon, Director Home Finance, said the enlightenment program was in line with the commission’s Capital Market Master Plan and urged SEC to reflect and review the challenges faced by investors with a view of actualizing the objectives of the plan in the remaining few years.
She said, “It is worthy to know that the SEC marked out a 10-year plan for the development of the Nigerian capital market. The objective is to devise strategies for the development of the Nigerian capital market in key areas such as investor protection and integration, professionalism and product innovation and for the expansion of the capital markets role in Nigeria’s economy.
“The SEC deemed it fit to host members of staff of the ministry of finance, budget and national planning and agencies under the ministry in a capital market training procession and workshop with investors.
“This event is to share knowledge on the capital market as well as obtain feedback from such bodies as a medium on the exchange of ideas and feedback to SEC on how to continuously improve on the market activities and regulations which is central to Nigeria’s request for implementation and achieving sustainable development.
“I enjoin participants to take advantage of initiatives introduced in the capital market which are aimed primarily at strengthening the market and accelerating development. I wish to congratulate SEC for the foresight and sense of purpose in organizing this workshop.”
In his opening address, Director General of the SEC, Mr Lamido Yuguda said the event which is organised by SEC in collaboration with the Financial Literacy Technical Committee (FLTC) is an annual event coordinated by IOSCO, which it mandates securities regulators globally to commemorate in their respective jurisdictions for the promotion of investor education and protection.
Mr Yuguda said as a member of IOSCO, the agency was joining the rest of the world to celebrate this important week with planned activities focused on enlightening retail investors on their rights, duties and responsibilities, and educating them on contemporary issues in the Nigerian capital market.
According to Mr Yuguda, the Nigerian financial sector is experiencing a resurgence of Ponzi schemes and illegal fund managers, who lure their subscribers by making promises of huge and unjustifiable returns on investment adding that these unlawful schemes have and continued to enjoy the massive patronage of the Nigerian populace and remain a source of concern for regulators in the financial sector.
“Thus, the commission is poised to continue to apply measures and seek the cooperation of relevant stakeholders to combat the activities of these unlawful schemes, which have undermined the reputation of our financial markets and dampened investors’ confidence, among other things.
“The SEC firmly believes that the Nigerian capital market can attain its potentials if market operators/participants contribute their respective quotas to the growth of the market. The SEC commits to always ensure and maintain an environment that is enabled by the appropriate regulatory framework, timely and affordable access to market, zero-tolerance for infractions, heightened investor confidence and awareness, innovative product development and good governance practices.
“There is the need to restore investor confidence and improve the participation of retail investors in the market. The demography of investors in the Nigerian capital market shows that our young population do not participate in the capital market, and only a few Nigerians invest in the capital market. This situation creates a huge challenge to the growth of our market and the commission is striving to change the narrative by instilling a fair, transparent and orderly market,” he added.
Investors Gain N1.09bn as NASD Share Price Rises 9.1%
By Adedapo Adesanya
The unlisted securities market closed the last trading session of the week on a positive note after it appreciated by 0.18 per cent on the back of growth in the share price of NASD Plc.
Business Post reports that the NASD Over-the-Counter (OTC) Securities Exchange returned to the bulls’ territory on Friday after it closed flat on Thursday.
NASD Plc was the major driver of the return of the bourse to the green region as its value went up during the session by N2.45 or 9.1 per cent to close at N26.99 per unit in contrast to N24.54 per unit it closed at the previous session.
As a result of this, the NASD unlisted security index (NSI) moved up by 1.32 points to 745.44 points from 744.12 points, while the market capitalisation gained N1.09 billion to wrap the day at N615.86 billion in contrast to the previous day’s N614.77 billion.
On the activity chart, there was an improvement as the trading volume surged by 34,985.6 per cent because of the 2.3 million units of shares exchanged by market participants compared with the 6,688 units transacted at the previous session.
In the same vein, the trading value rose by 17,680.6 per cent to N63.4 million from the previous day’s N356,563.60, while the number of deals witnessed a 100 per cent rise as investors carried out 12 deals compared to the six deals executed at the previous session.
At the close of trades, Food Concepts Plc was the most traded stock by volume (year-to-date) with 11.4 billion units of its shares worth N14.4 billion, Lighthouse Financial Service Plc followed with 1.1 billion units valued at N546.2 million, while Geo Fluids Plc was in third place with 1.0 billion units worth N700.1 million.
Food Concepts Plc was also the most traded stock by value on a year-to-date basis with 11.4 billion units worth N14.4 billion, trailed by Nigerian Exchange (NGX) Group Plc with 456.4 million units valued at N9.2 billion, VFD Group Plc with 10.4 million units valued at N3.5 billion.
Naira Trades N414.73/$1 as Cryptos Bleed Heavily
By Adedapo Adesanya
The Naira appreciated against the US Dollar at the Investors and Exporters (I&E) window of the foreign exchange (forex) market by 0.02 per cent or 7 kobo on Friday, December 4.
Data showed that the local currency was sold for N414.73/$1 at the investors’ window yesterday compared with the N414.80/$1 it traded on Thursday.
At the final trading session of the week, the turnover was $103.01 million as against $139.67 million achieved at the preceding session, indicating a $36.66 million or 26.62 per cent decline.
Also, the exchange rate of the Naira to the United States currency recorded a movement on Friday, though downward as the Nigerian currency depreciated by 4 kobo as it closed at N411.74/$1 versus the preceding day’s N411.70/$1.
The local currency, however, appreciated by N2.17 against the British Pound Sterling to settle at N546.26/£1 compared to N548.43/£1 it traded at the previous trading session and 57 kobo against the Euro to trade at N465.68/€1 compared to the preceding day’s N466.25/€1.
At the cryptocurrency market, investors counted a heavy loss as the new variant of the coronavirus called Omicron and hawkish comments by the US Federal Reserve that it could raise interest rates have raised serious concerns, causing cryptos to bleed heavily.
The heaviest loss was suffered by Dash (DASH), which plunged by 35.3 per cent to sell for N66,595.85. Ripple (XRP) depreciated 30.6 per cent to trade at N381.85, while Litecoin (LTC) sold for N66,595.85 after declining by 24.1 per cent.
Dogecoin (DOGE) went down by 22.7 per cent to sell at N90.29, Cardano (ADA) depreciated by 20.8 per cent to N652.82, Bitcoin (BTC) depleted by 16.9 per cent to quote at N26,800,504.20, Ethereum (ETH) equally saw a 16.9 per cent depreciation to trade at N2,100,100.39, Binance Coin (BNB) recorded a 12.9 per cent depreciation to trade at N218,577.24, Tron (TRX) went down by 12.7 per cent to trade at N48.00, while the US Dollar Tether (USDT) recorded a 0.1 per cent marginal loss to sell for N554.76.
Crude Mixed as Market Remains Unsettled by Omicron Jitters
By Adedapo Adesanya
Crude prices closed mixed on Friday, December 3 after erasing earlier big gains on growing worries that rising coronavirus cases and a new variant could reduce global oil demand.
Brent crude gained 21 cents or 0.3 per cent to trade at $69.88 per barrel while on the other hand, the United States West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude lost 24 cents or 0.36 per cent to sell at $66.26 per barrel.
Both benchmarks declined for a sixth week in a row for the first time since November 2018.
Oil prices had witnessed one of the most troubled weeks as the market reeled from the fear brought about by the Omicron variant of the coronavirus with speculations that it could spark new lockdowns and dent fuel demand.
The World Health Organization (WHO) urged countries to vaccinate their people to fight the virus, saying travel curbs were not the answer.
Even with this, the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies (OPEC+) surprised the market on Thursday when it stuck to its plans to add 400,000 barrels per day supply in January.
However, it said it will continue to monitor the market and this could make it change course if demand suffered from measures to contain the spread of the Omicron coronavirus variant.
The alliance said they could meet again before their next scheduled meeting on January 4.
Analysts noted that with the coronavirus cases rising, the US jobs report for November also didn’t help demand outlook even as the unemployment rate plunged to a 21-month low of 4.2 per cent, suggesting the country’s labour market was rapidly tightening.
US employment growth slowed considerably in November amid job losses at retailers and in local government education.
Meanwhile, in Vienna, diplomats attempting to restore the nuclear deal between Iran and world powers face substantial challenges that need urgent solutions, the top European envoy said Friday. Talks are set to resume next week.
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