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Economy

SEC Reaffirms Commitment to Frustrate Ponzi Scheme Operators

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Ponzi Scheme

By Modupe Gbadeyanka

The acting Director General of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Ms Mary Uduk, has reaffirmed the commitment of her agency to frustrate operations of illegal fund managers in the country.

Ms Uduk, who spoke at the weekend in Abuja, said the enforcement department of the commission has intensified efforts to close these Ponzi schemes and prosecute the promoters.

Represented by the Head, office of the Chief Economist, Mr Okechukwu Umeano, the acting DG noted that the, “Commission continues to create awareness through various media to educate investors about these schemes and urge people to avoid putting money into them. It is an ill wind that blows no one any good.”

“SEC has introduced a lot of innovative processes to clean up the market and make it easier and safer for investors. Some of these measures and processes include the E-Dividend and Direct Cash Settlement and regularisation of multiple accounts among others.

“Other activities of the SEC such as Risk Based Supervision, encouraging automation, strengthening self-regulatory organizations (SROs) are all geared towards a better market and in turn improved investor confidence,” she added.

Ms Uduk said the agency remains committed to its core mandate of protecting investors and assures the general public that it shall perform this function in line with extant securities legislation.

“We advise prospective investors to cross check properly before patronising any fund manager. Information about registered entities and investment schemes approved by the Commission can be found on the commission’s website, www.sec.gov.ng, or at any of the commission’s offices,” she stated.

The Acting DG expressed the optimism that the market will have a positive year, and thanked the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for its actions in pushing down sovereign yields and helping funds flow to the equities market thereby reducing the crowding out of corporate from the debt market.

“Their actions in the area of foreign exchange management, and how they respond to rising inflation will play a huge role in determining market performance. However, we have confidence in their ability to do what is best for the economy.

“Having said all these, the SEC will continue to do its bit to ensure our market continues to grow. We will keep engaging eligible companies to list, government to ensure that government assets are sold through the market, and removal of the disincentives to investing in the Nigerian capital market.

“The commission remains committed to its core mandate of protecting investors and assures the general public that it shall perform this function in line with extant securities legislation,” she added.

Modupe Gbadeyanka is a fast-rising journalist with Business Post Nigeria. Her passion for journalism is amazing. She is willing to learn more with a view to becoming one of the best pen-pushers in Nigeria. Her role models are the duo of CNN's Richard Quest and Christiane Amanpour.

Economy

Access Holdings Merges Sigma, FGPL for Formidable PFA Business

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Sigma Pensions

By Aduragbemi Omiyale

To create a formidable pension funds administration (PFA) business in Nigeria, Access Holdings Plc has merged its subsidiary, First Guarantee Pension Limited (FGPL), with Sigma Pensions Limited.

The marriage between the two PFAs was made possible after Access Holdings acquired an indirect equity stake in Sigma.

Recall that in October, the company announced that it was buying a stake in Sigma to revolutionise the PFA sector.

On Thursday, a court approved the merger between the firm and FGPL, giving room for the organisations to become one and offer innovative products to customers.

A notice signed by the group company secretary of Access Holdings, Mr Sunday Ekwochi, confirmed the development.

“Sequel to our announcement on October 25, 2022, Access Holdings Plc, trading as Access Corporation, today announces the completion of its acquisition of an indirect equity stake in Sigma and the merger of its subsidiary, FGPL, with Sigma.

“Following the sanction of the scheme of merger between Sigma and FGPL by the Federal High Court on December 1, 2022, FGPL has been dissolved without winding up, leaving Sigma as the surviving entity,” a part of the statement dated Friday, December 2, 2022.

“Following the successful completion of the merger, our plan is to leverage the synergies of these entities, as well as the corporation’s expansive distribution network, strong risk management culture and best-in-class governance standards to create a formidable pension funds administration business,” the group chief executive of Access Holdings, Mr Herbert Wigwe, stated.

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Economy

FrieslandCampina Buoys Unlisted Securities Market by 1.11%

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FrieslandCampina

By Adedapo Adesanya

The NASD Over-the-Counter (OTC) Securities Exchange returned to the positive zone on Friday, December 2, as it appreciated by 1.11 per cent at the close of business.

This was driven by a gain in the stock price of FrieslandCampina Wamco Nigeria Plc. The company appreciated by N5.29 price to close at N66.63 per share versus the previous day’s price of N61.34 per share.

This outweighed the 1 Kobo loss recorded by UBN Property Plc during the session as the price of the property investment company went down to 91 Kobo per unit from the preceding session’s 92 Kobo.

When the market closed for the day, the total value of the unlisted securities market increased by N10.27 billion to N933.71 billion from N923.44 billion.

In the same vein, the NASD Unlisted Securities Index (NSI) stretched by 7.82 basis points to 710.58 basis points from the 702.76 basis points in the previous session.

During the session, there was a surge in the volume of securities by 140,993.7 per cent as investors exchanged 2.2 million units, in contrast to the previous day’s 14,508 units.

Likewise, the value of shares traded at the session ballooned by 1,526.6 per cent to N10.7 million from the N657,534.75 recorded a day earlier, while the number of deals improved by 400 per cent to 20 deals from four deals.

When the market closed for the day, AG Mortgage Bank Plc was the most traded stock by volume (year-to-date) with 2.3 billion units valued at N1.2 billion, Central Securities Clearing System (CSCS) Plc occupied second place with 687.8 million units worth N14.3 billion, while Lighthouse Financials Services Plc was in third place with 224.7 million units valued at N112.3 million.

Also, CSCS Plc ended the day as the most traded stock by value (year-to-date) by trading 687.8 million units worth N14.3 billion, VFD Group Plc was in second place with 29.1 billion units valued at N7.7 billion, and FrieslandCampina WAMCO Plc was in third place after selling 16.8 million units worth N1.9 billion.

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Economy

Naira Sells N730/$1 in Black Market, N748/$1 at P2P, N445.33/$1 at I&E

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redesign Naira Notes

By Adedapo Adesanya

Normalcy seems to have returned to the currency market in Nigeria as the Naira further appreciated against the United States Dollar at the various segments of the ecosystem.

In the Investors and Exporters (I&E) segment of the foreign exchange (forex) market, the Nigerian currency gained 50 Kobo or 0.11 per cent to quote at N445.33/$1, in contrast to Thursday’s rate of N445.83/$1.

It was observed that domestic currency withstood significant FX demand pressure during the trading session as forex traders completed transactions worth $159.02 million compared with the $99.50 million executed a day earlier, indicating a 59.1 per cent or $59.52 million increase in FX turnover.

Also, in the Peer-to-Peer (P2P) window, the local currency appreciated against the greenback by N14 or 1.8 per cent to trade at N748/$1 compared with the preceding day’s N762/$1.

In the same vein, the value of the Nigerian currency to its American counterpart improved by N10 yesterday to sell for N735/$1 against N745/$1 of the preceding trading session.

However, in the interbank segment, the Naira lost N3.19 against the Euro on Friday as it closed at N464.98/€1 versus Thursday’s exchange rate of N461.79/€1, and against the Pound Sterling, it depreciated by N7.66 to quote at N542.33/£1 compared with the previous day’s N534.67/£1.

Meanwhile, the cryptocurrency market rebounded yesterday as investors showed renewed interest in digital assets, causing the value of Dogecoin (DOGE) to rise by 2.6 per cent to $0.1016.

Further, Cardano (ADA) recorded a 1.8 per cent increase to sell at $0.3189, Ethereum (ETH) saw its value go up by 1.3 per cent to close at $1,289.56, and Solana (SOL) appreciated by 1.4 per cent to trade at $13.65.

In addition, Binance Coin (BNB) grew by 1.1 per cent to settle at $291.72, Litecoin (LTC) appreciated by 1.0 per cent to trade at $77.23, Ripple (XRP) made a 0.9 per cent rise to finish at $0.3924, and Bitcoin (BTC) rose by 0.5 per cent to $17,030.33.

However, the US Dollar Tether (USDT) and Binance USD (BUSD) closed flat at $1.00 on Friday.

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