By Adedapo Adesanya
The Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) in a collaborative effort with fund managers enlightened market professionals on the features and benefits of the NSE Mutual Fund Trading and Distribution Platform on Thursday, October 3, 2019 in Lagos.
The event was aimed at enhancing visibility for listed mutual funds and increase investment interest amongst retail investors to further enhance access to a wide range of open-ended funds in Nigeria.
The one-day workshop featured the Head, Investment Management Department at the Securities Exchange Commission, Mr Efiok E. Efiok; President of the Fund Managers Association of Nigeria (FMAN), Mr Dayo Obisan; The Head of Market Surveillance at the NSE, Mr Abimbola Babalola among other dignified members in the asset management world.
The event also engaged stakeholders to promote access to diverse investment opportunities while building and strengthening investor confidence in the capital markets using mutual funds as a tool.
Looking at the role to that the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has played to increase interest and confidence in mutual funds, Mr. Efiok E. Efiok from the SEC noted the trust structure, diversification, and protection put in place had ensured that the commission was promoting awareness in the asset class.
Mr Dayo Obisan, on his part, noted that the collaboration was a step towards investment education leveraging on the stockbroking platform to drive for the distribution of mutual funds meant to tap into the retail investments which will bring in more liquidity to enhance growth.
He also noted that the collaboration was bound to bring about more returns, innovation, and depth by widening distribution which he said should be readily adopted.
He also said that the investing public should be encouraged to look into the growing opportunities of the industry which had a Net Asset Value (NAV) of N621.6 billion from 78 registered funds, and by August 2019 had N801.5 billion from 87 registered funds.
Mr Abimbola Babalola, representing the Exchange, noted that going forward the mutual funds listing on the NSE was a disruption to watch out for as there was bound to be transparency following the shift from direct investments to indirect investments, which will create options for people to invest better.
He hinted that it was also an opportunity to grow local institutional investors who will stabilize the market should foreign investors decide to leave the country and called on stockbrokers to establish a relationship with fund managers which will be profitable to the market.
Mr. Efiok, remarked that the SEC was looking at ways to thrive retail investments by making the authorization process easier and noted that the commission had authorized the introduction a health fund and hinted that a football fund was currently under development.
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