By Dipo Olowookere
The decision of politicians to stir up the race to Aso Rock in 2023 very earlier in 2022 is already taking its toll on the stock market in Nigeria.
Last week, former Governor of Lagos State and National Leader of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Mr Bola Tinubu, declared his interest to President Muhammadu Buhari to contest the nation’s highest political position next year.
After his open declaration at the Presidential Villa, others started to announce their interest in the same position and the race started to get interesting with some parts of the country rooting for Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, who is believed to be the political godson of Mr Tinubu.
For investors in the capital market, they never expected this to occupy the ecosystem in the first month of 2022. They had thought the race to Aso Rock would get heated up by the second or third quarter of the year.
With the development, some of them had to trade cautiously and this may have caused the decline in the weekly investment in stocks last week.
According to data obtained by Business Post, a total of 1.6 billion shares worth N32.7 billion were traded in 22,607 deals as against the 2.0 billion shares worth N59.0 billion transacted in 15,750 deals in the first week of the year, which only had four trading sessions.
A breakdown showed that financial stocks dominated the activity chart in the week with 731.3 million units valued at 6.5 billion traded in 10,822 deals, contributing 45.71 per cent and 19.92 per cent to the total trading volume and value respectively.
Conglomerate equities trailed with 403.7 million units worth N452.9 million in 1,537 deals, while consumer shares exchanged 314.8 million units worth N17.8 billion in 4,101 deals.
Transcorp, BUA Foods and Jaiz Bank were the most active stocks in the five-day trading week, with the sale of 775.7 million units valued at N16.6 billion executed in 2,644 deals, accounting for 48.49 per cent and 50.82 per cent of the total trading volume and value respectively.
A total of 33 equities appreciated in price during the week, lower than 40 equities in the previous week, while 35 equities depreciated in price, higher than 31 equities in the previous week, with 88 equities closing flat, lower than 84 equities recorded in the previous week.
Analysis indicated that BUA Foods was the biggest price riser as its value went up by 24.06 per cent to N66.00, followed by Transcorp, which gained 16.33 per cent to trade at N1.14.
Jaiz Bank grew by 15.25 per cent week-on-week to sell for 68 kobo, Fidson appreciated by 13.64 per cent to quote at N7.50, while Academy Press improved by 10.00 per cent to trade at 66 kobo.
On the reverse side, Sunu Assurances ended the week as the heaviest price loser after its equity price went down by 16.22 per cent to close at 31 kobo.
Mutual Benefits fell by 12.90 per cent to 27 kobo, Berger Paints dropped 9.94 per cent to N7.70, Northern Nigerian Flour Mills depreciated by 9.66 per cent to N6.55, while Custodian Investment decreased by 9.49 per cent to N7.15.
Despite the low trades, the All-Share Index and market capitalisation of the Nigerian Exchange (NGX) Limited appreciated by 1.37 per cent week-on-week to 44,454.67 points and N23.951 trillion respectively.
Similarly, all other indices finished higher with the exception of NGX CG, insurance, NGX AFR Bank Value, consumer goods and Lotus II indices, which depreciated by 0.79 per cent, 1.54 per cent, 0.07 per cent, 4.35 per cent and 1.34 per cent respectively, while the ASem, NGX Growth I and sovereign bond indices closed flat.
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.”
JUST IN: CBN Raises Benchmark Interest Rate to 13%
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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