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Economy

Airtel Africa, Others Lift NGX All-Share Index Above 45,000 Points

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NSE All-Share Index

By Dipo Olowookere

The Nigerian Exchange (NGX) Limited appreciated by 1.73 per cent on Wednesday amid interest in some blue-chips equities trading on the platform, including Airtel Africa.

The stock price of the telco rose by the maximum 10.00 per cent at the midweek session to close at N1,155.50 and was trailed by Cornerstone Insurance, which gained 6.00 per cent to trade at 53 kobo.

Courtville appreciated by 5.26 per cent to quote at 40 kobo, Union Bank rose by 4.46 per cent to N5.85, while Seplat improved by 4.36 per cent to sell for N720.10.

On the flip side, FTN Cocoa topped the losers’ chart yesterday with a price depreciation of 7.69 per cent to trade at 36 kobo, Consolidated Hallmark Insurance lost 7.25 per cent to close at 64 kobo, Regency Assurance fell by 6.67 per cent to 42 kobo, Japaul depreciated by 4.76 per cent to 40 kobo, while Jaiz Bank went down by 4.55 per cent to 63 kobo.

At the close of business, a total of 16 stocks appreciated in price while 17 stocks depreciated in price, indicating a negative market breadth and a weak investor sentiment.

Business Post reports that only the consumer goods sector ended bearish as it dropped 0.02 per cent as the industrial goods sector closed flat, with the energy, insurance and banking counters appreciating by 2.21 per cent, 0.59 per cent and 0.50 per cent respectively.

When the closing gong was beaten by 2:30 pm yesterday, the All-Share Index (ASI) rose by 774.25 points to 45,430.14 points from 44,655.89 points, while the market capitalisation expanded by N417 billion to N24.477 trillion from N24.060 trillion.

It was observed that the activity level improved on Wednesday as investors traded 252.9 million stocks valued at N8.9 billion in 4,218 deals as against the 235.2 million stocks valued at N1.9 billion transacted on Tuesday in 4,151 deals, indicating an increase in the trading volume, value and number of deals by 7.53 per cent, 365.28 per cent and 1.61 per cent respectively.

GTCO emerged as the most active stock of the session with a turnover of 25.5 million units valued at N649.4 million, followed by Dangote Cement, which commenced its share buy-back scheme during the session with the sale of 24.5 million units worth N6.5 billion.

FBN Holdings traded 23.1 million shares for N277.2 million, Fidelity Bank exchanged 21.1 million equities worth N57.2 million, while FCMB exchanged 12.9 million stocks for N38.8 million.

Dipo Olowookere is a journalist based in Nigeria that has passion for reporting business news stories. At his leisure time, he watches football and supports 3SC of Ibadan. Mr Olowookere can be reached via dipo.olowookere@businesspost.ng

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Economy

Binance Gets Digital Asset Service Provider Licence in France

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Binance

By Adedapo Adesanya

Binance, the world’s largest crypto and blockchain infrastructure provider, has been granted a Digital Asset Service Provider (DASP) registration to operate in France.

The green light was given by Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF), which regulates the French financial markets, with the approval of the Autorité de Contrôle Prudentiel et de Résolution (ACPR), the authority responsible for supervising the banking and insurance sectors in France, especially AML Regulations.

The landmark achievement for Binance represents its first DASP registration in the European Union and demonstrates its commitment to being a compliance-first exchange.

The registration allows Binance France SAS to operate as a DASP in France and provides regulatory protection for local users with regard to the implementation of French AML/CFT and customer identification requirements.

This came just after the platform received licenses to be a crypto service provider in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, a key milestone for the world’s largest digital-asset exchange as it set up the stage for a major push in the Middle East.

According to Binance, compliance and regulation are critical to the development and maturation of the crypto and blockchain industry.

Mr Changpeng Zhao (CZ), founder and CEO of Binance, said: “Effective regulation is essential for the mainstream adoption of cryptocurrency. The French DASP and AML/CFT regulations put in place stringent anti-money laundering and fit and proper requirements to meet the high standards necessary to be regulated in France.”

“We are grateful to the AMF and ACPR who both demonstrated a commitment to innovation that made it possible for Binance to navigate the entire application process. Since day one, Binance has always put its users first, and now the crypto community can have even further confidence in Binance France as a trusted DASP registered in France,” he added.

Mr David Princay, CEO of Binance France added, “The registration of Binance France as a DASP is a key milestone for crypto in Europe. In particular, the new levels of protection for AML will help grow crypto adoption in France and Europe. Greater adoption will help bring better liquidity to the market which will be welcomed by users and the community in particular.”

Following the registration, Binance will significantly expand its operations and intends to recruit more people focused on cryptocurrency and blockchain infrastructure development.

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Economy

We’ll Sustain High Level of Corporate Governance—Seplat

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Seplat

By Aduragbemi Omiyale

The immediate past chairman of Seplat Energy Plc, Mr Ambrosie Bryant Chukwueloka (ABC) Orjiako, has assured that the company will continue to sustain a high level of corporate governance.

Speaking last Thursday at the closing gong ceremony to honour him and introduce his successor, Mr Basil Omiyi, to the market, the energy expert applauded the Nigerian Exchange (NGX) Limited for insisting on transparent and accountable corporate governance for issuers on its platform.

According to him, this has been critical to the company’s growth, assuring that this trend would be maintained in the interest of the firm’s stakeholders.

“The high level of corporate governance promoted by NGX for its listed companies was a key attribute that motivated Seplat Energy Plc to become part of the market.

“Since our acceptance into the market, Seplat Energy Plc has continued to deliver a corporate governance structure that is accountable and transparent to our investors, employees, government and all other relevant stakeholders.

“We are committed to sustaining these high levels of corporate governance through our collaboration with NGX as we implement market-leading measures towards ensuring Nigeria achieves a sustainable energy sector,” he said.

Corroborating him, Mr Omiyi, said, “NGX has played an instrumental role in Seplat Energy Plc’s growth within the domestic and international markets. Our history with the exchange dates back to 2014 when the shares of Seplat Energy Plc were listed in the market and over the years, Seplat has benefitted immensely from its collaboration with NGX.

“As we celebrate another milestone on the Trading Floor of the Exchange, we look forward to strengthening our partnership with NGX for the fulfilment of our joint goal of leveraging capital to empower sustainable initiatives that positively impact our investors, employees, and the environment.”

The chairman of NGX, Mr A.B. Mahmoud, in his address, congratulated Mr Orjiako for his exemplary leadership and outstanding performance of Seplat Energy for well over a decade, during which the company was listed on both NGX and the London Stock Exchange.

“The notable acquisition of eight oil and gas assets, expansion of the Oben and development of the ANOH gas plants under his leadership positioned the company as the largest indigenous domestic supplier of gas,” Mr Mahmoud, who was represented by a director on the bourse, Mr Kamarudeen Oladosu, he noted.

On his part, the CEO of NGX, Mr Temi Popoola, said, “The exchange is better positioned to lead government advocacy efforts for listed companies, promote technology advancement and digital innovation for the capital market, and increase retail investor participation in the capital market aimed at building a market for the future and addressing the prevailing challenge of financial inclusion.

“We welcome Seplat Energy Plc to a renewed NGX and look forward to deepening our collaboration to develop and push for disruptive, out of the box ideas that could support Nigeria’s energy transition into a net-zero economy.”

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Economy

JUST IN: CBN Raises Benchmark Interest Rate to 13%

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killing interest rate

By Dipo Olowookere

For the first time in two years, the Monetary Policy Rate (MPR) has been raised by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to 13.0 per cent from 11.5 per cent.

Mr Godwin Emefiele, the Governor of the CBN, who announced this development on Tuesday in Abuja, explained that the decision to increase the benchmark interest rate was taken at the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting held yesterday and today.

While addressing financial reporters this afternoon, Mr Emefiele said members of the committee were unanimous with the decision to hike the rates as it was the best thing to do after holding them for about two years.

According to the central bank chief, one of the reasons for raising the rate is to control liquidity ahead of the 2023 general elections as politicians would be expected to flood the system with cash in a bid to woo voters.

However, the other parameters were left unchanged by members at the gathering as the Asymmetric corridor remained around the MPR at +100/-700bps, the Cash Reserve Ratio (CRR) at 27.5 per cent and the Liquidity Ratio (LR) at 30.0 per cent.

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