NSE plans naira futures’ trading

Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE)

Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE)

THE Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) has unfolded plans to start trading naira futures that will help investors hedge against movements in the local currency, its Chief Executive Officer, Oscar Onyema said.

Meanwhile, the bourse, on Monday, led stakeholders to an investor at the London Stock Exchange (LSE), to promote dual listing of firms in Lagos and London exchanges.

“It would be awesome if we had a naira-dollar contract that we could trade on the exchange,” he said in an interview in London on Monday, stressing, “futures and options are asset classes that we think would be very beneficial to foreign investors.”

The bourse might offer futures by the end of 2017, Onyema said.

Traders and bankers have called for a loosening of controls enforced by the Central Bank of Nigeria, to protect the currency of Africa’s biggest oil producer against a 45 per cent slump in Brent crude prices in the past year. The naira has weakened by 18 per cent against the dollar in that period.

Plans for this year include a “premium board for large-cap securities that meet the highest corporate governance standards,” Onyeama said.

A Nigerian depositary receipt programme, which will allow local investors to access foreign-listed companies on the domestic market, is also in the works, he said.

According to him, there’s a “very rich pipeline” of companies that may start trading their shares this year, depending on market conditions, including businesses that could list securities in London and Lagos.

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