By Adedapo Adesanya
The NASD Over-the-Counter (OTC) started the week on a negative note after it bled by 1.3 per cent on Monday as a result of profit-taking, especially in the shares of FrieslandCampina WAMCO Nigeria Plc and Central Securities Clearing Systems (CSCS) Plc.
The Peak Milk maker lost N3.3 or 2.9 per cent yesterday to trade at N115.00 per share compared with the previous N118.30 per share, while the Nigerian depository company depreciated by N1.00 or 5.4 per cent to quote at N18.38 per unit as against the preceding session’s value of N19.38 per unit.
The losses posted by the duo decreased the market capitalisation of the bourse by N8.23 billion to N622.23 billion from N630.46 billion and weakened the NASD Unlisted Securities Index (NSI) by 9.71 points to wrap the session at 734.83 points compared with 744.54 points recorded at the previous session.
Unfortunately, the market did not record a price gainer yesterday, but the volume of securities traded at the bourse by investors went down by 97.3 per cent to 111,347 units from the 4.1 million units achieved last Friday.
In the same vein, the value of shares that exchanged hands during the trading day depleted by 94.5 per cent to N4.8 million from N86.9 million, while the number of deals executed by traders depreciated by 12.5 per cent to seven deals from the eight deals carried out at the preceding session.
At the close of business, CSCS Plc maintained its position as the most traded security by volume on a year-to-date basis with 653.7 million units of its shares sold for N13.7 billion. VFD Group Plc came next with 916,161 units valued at N331.5 million, while Friesland Campina WAMCO Nigeria Plc has so far traded 233,766 units valued at N27.5 million.
Also, CSCS Plc ended the day as the most traded stock by value on a year-to-date basis with the sale of 653.7 million units worth N13.7 billion. VFD Group Plc also came next with 916,161 units worth N331.5 million, while Friesland Campina WAMCO Nigeria Plc trailed with 233,766 units worth N27.5 million.
Oil Market Down Amid Supply, Economic Worries
By Adedapo Adesanya
The oil market was down on Tuesday amid tight supply worries, a possible recession, and China’s COVID-19 curbs, causing the Brent crude to decline by 14 cents or 0.28 per cent to $113.56 per barrel, with the United States West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude shedding 52 cents or 0.87 per cent to $109.77 per barrel.
Yesterday, the US Energy Secretary, Ms Jennifer Granholm, said President Joe Biden had not ruled out using export restrictions to ease soaring domestic fuel prices.
This was after she was asked if the United States was considering restricting petroleum exports to ease fuel prices. “I can confirm the president is not taking any tools off the table,” she said.
The United States exported around 8.6 million barrels per day of oil and refined products in 2021, slightly more than it imported and now the Biden administration has been struggling to combat inflation, including record pump prices, as demand rebounds from the depths of the COVID-19 pandemic and supply has been disrupted since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Another reason for the fall in prices on Tuesday was the worries about threats to the global economy, the main theme of the Davos meeting this week.
Political and business leaders gathered for the World Economic Forum (WEF) against a backdrop of inflation at its highest level in a generation in major economies and they agree that the repercussions on the oil market of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and COVID-19 lockdowns in China with no clear end have worsened the situation.
Meanwhile, Beijing is stepping up quarantine efforts to end its COVID-19 outbreak while Shanghai’s lockdown is due to be lifted in a little more than a week.
Prices earlier were supported as the European Union (EU) moved closer to agreeing to a ban on Russian oil imports.
France’s new foreign minister, Ms Catherine Colonna said on Tuesday she was optimistic that those still opposed to a new EU sanctions package that would phase out Russian oil imports to the bloc could be convinced.
She also added that the bloc would strike a deal that would have the effect of tightening global supply.
Travel during the upcoming US Memorial Day weekend is expected to be the busiest in two years as more drivers hit the road and shake off coronavirus lockdowns despite high pump prices.
Meanwhile, the American Petroleum Institute (API) reported a small build this week for crude oil of 567,000 barrels, which put pressure on crude oil prices.
The draw comes even as the US Department of Energy released 6 million barrels from the Strategic Petroleum Reserves in Week Ending May 20.
US crude inventories have shed some 75 million barrels since the start of 2021 and about 18 million barrels since the start of 2020, according to API data.
Official government data from the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) will be released on Wednesday.
Binance Gets Digital Asset Service Provider Licence in France
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.
We’ll Sustain High Level of Corporate Governance—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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