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SEC optimistic on capital market turnaround in 2016

Securities-and-Exchange-CommissionThe Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Monday expressed optimism that capital market activities would witness a turnaround in 2016 due to its various initiatives.

Mr Mounir Gwarzo, the Director-General of the commission, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos that he was optimistic that the market would perform better in 2016.

Gwarzo said that the commission was looking at ways to stabilise the market and encourage domestic investors to return to the market.

He said that SEC was committed to increasing domestic investors’ participation in the market, noting that the market was now dominated by foreign investors.

“The foreign investors, like we say, is hot money and sometimes when they are not comfortable even though fundamentals are still okay, they will try to either walk away or hold on,” Gwarzo said.

He listed some initiatives the commission pursued during the year to bring in domestic investors to include e-dividend payment, direct settlement and dematerialisation.

The director-general said that SEC had also embarked on public enlightenment to educate investors on gains of investing in the market.

“The market is also happy with some of the enforcement actions we have been taking which shows that anybody that does wrong in the market will be punished,” he said.

Speaking on the market downturn, Gwarzo said that he was not happy with the current developments in the market.

“I’m not too happy the way the market is today, but its a market that goes up and down. Its not a market that is continuously growing.

“If you invest one million naira in the market, its not sacrosanct that it will now turn back to be N1.5 million or N1.2 million. Its a market that can go up and go down,” Gwarzo said.

He said that the market situation was a reflection of economic situation of the country.

Gwarzo described the development as a normal trend in all capital markets in the world.

According to him, the commission is also engaging government in terms of some fiscal incentives that can be provided to enhance activities in the market.

He said that the National Investor Protection Fund (NIPF), inaugurated by the commission, was another initiative that would boost investor confidence in the market.

“The NIPF we have set up will give a lot of comfort to the investors even though it may not ameliorate their problems 100 per cent, but we believe it will give them some comfort,” he said.

He said that investors, who lost money in the market, could be compensated through the fund.

“I’m very positive that the market will be better next year’’.

Meanwhile, a turnover of 1.04 billion shares worth N13.01 billion were exchanged by investors in 13,407 deals last week.

This was against 793.56 million shares valued at N7.15 billion traded in 12,831 deals in the preceding week.

The financial services sector led the activity chart with 857.05 million shares worth N6.77 billion traded in 7,916 deals.

The consumer goods industry followed with 64.55 million shares worth N4.22 billion traded in 2,479 deals.

The third place was occupied by the Conglomerates with a turnover of 62.75 million shares worth N585.66 million in 638 deals.

The NSE All-Share Index lost 513.83 points or 1.83 per cent to close at 27,617.45 last week against 28,131.28 posted in the preceding week.

Also, the market capitalisation, which opened at N9.670 trillion, lost N175 billion to close at N9.495 trillion.

Tiger Brands topped the losers’ chart in percentage terms, dropping by 17.65 per cent or 33k to close at N1.54 per share.

Unity Bank trailed with a loss of 11.30 per cent or 13k to close at N1.15, while May & Baker dropped 10.48 per cent or 11k to close at 94k per share.

On the other hand, Ikeja Hotel led the gainers’ table in percentage terms, growing by 12.27 per cent or 40k to close at N3.66 per share.

Unilever followed with a gain of 9.68 per cent or N3.52 to close at N39.90, while Caverton increased by 9.28 per cent or 22k to close at N2.59 per share.



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