SEC Wants More Retail Investors In The Capital Market


As part of measures to create wealth, deepen the market and grow the nation’s economy the Securities and Exchange Commission, SEC says it has stepped up efforts to encourage retail investors to invest in the nation’s capital market

Acting Director General of the SEC, Ms. Mary Uduk who spoke to journalists in Lagos, urged investors to look into the capital market for future investments as various products abound that would suit their needs.  7abF()&2b^21Q)aw71V&xsMm

According to her, “You don’t need to have so much money to be able to tap into the opportunities available in the capital market. For instance, with the government bond, the minimum investable amount is 10,000 naira and you can buy in subsequent amounts of 1,000 naira.

“We have Collective Investments Schemes (CIS), we have the stocks that you can buy through the stockbrokers and those you can invest in with as little as 5,000 naira. So you don’t necessarily have to have a lot of money to invest, all you need is to approach the stockbrokers. They can open an account for you and whatever you have you can pay into the account and give instructions in what kind of investments you want to make.

Uduk said it is important for people to understand the workings of the capital market and not have the misconception that they must have a lot of money before they can invest.

“We have to disabuse our minds of it. I think that is what is leading people into putting money into Ponzi schemes and lose their money. So all you need to do is to go to SEC website see the list of capital market operators and approach one of them to open an account” she said.

The Acting DG assured investors that the SEC will continue to play its role of providing a good playing ground for investors to ensure that they get the benefits of their investments.

“The SEC is very interested in investor protection and that is why we have rules that the players must obey and all these are channeled towards ensuring that our market is safe for investors.

“The smaller the investors the more he/she is protected. We don’t want any investor to go into the market and lose money, that will not be good for our market.

Uduk said the SEC has continued to educate and enlighten Nigerians about the investment opportunities available in the market and urged potential investors to engage professionals who will guide them on relevant products to invest in.

“In the past people just go to stockbrokers to buy stocks without having proper knowledge of what to buy but now we are encouraging people to go through the investment schemes. If you don’t know anything about stocks go through CIS and invest in different stocks so that professionals can manage your investments. If I am a welder for instance and I don’t know anything about investments, I can put my money there and professionals will manage it for me” she added.



Unclaimed Dividends Will Reduce With Electronic Offering – SEC


The introduction of electronic offering in the Nigerian capital market has been described as a major achievement that will help solve the problems of unclaimed dividends.


This was stated by Acting DG of the Securities and Exchange Commission, SEC, Ms. Mary Uduk in an interview, weekend in Abuja.


Uduk said the SEC is excited about electronic offering and is in full support hence the rules were developed and espoused to the market to guide its implementation. 


According to her, “We believe that electronic offerings will help solve the problems of unclaimed dividends so it’s something we are backing seriously. Through electronic offerings we will not have the problems of identity as we had in previous listings. 


“It has a lot of advantages, it means that people who are not close by during an offering can invest, we are able to get the data we need for regulation, the offering is more efficient and it is cost saving. It is something we are working on; the rules will soon be out for everyone to use.


The Acting DG said when it becomes operational, an investor in Ghana or South Africa can invest in the Nigerian Capital Market via electronic offering.


“That is the idea but when the exchanges finish putting it together that is what will happen. Ours is to make the rules and regulate, but that’s the idea. We want to open up our market so that more people can invest from different parts of the world. 


“We want a deeper, bigger, more attractive market. We think our economy is big enough to have a much bigger market. The capital market makes up less than 10 percent of the GDP of the country. If you look at other countries even South Africa, it’s over 100 percent of GDP. We believe we have a large room for expansion and that is what we are pursuing” Uduk stated.


 On e-filing, Uduk disclosed that the Commission is working hard to ensure it commences in the not too distant future. 


She said, “We are in the process of deploying the software that will help with that. That will make filing more efficient, make it easier for capital market operators to send in returns to us and make the market more transparent”.

SEC Committed To Wiping Out Future Unclaimed Dividends – Uduk


The Securities and Exchange Commission, SEC, has assured investors in the capital market that  the solution ton n unclaimed is near as there would be no future unclaimed dividends on those currently being declared by companies.

Acting Director General of the SEC, Ms. Mary Uduk disclosed this in a recent  interview in Abuja, through the Head, Office of the Chief Economist of the SEC, Mr. Okey Umeano, said the Commission has gone very far in solving the unclaimed dividends problem, which he said, is a major milestone.

According to her, “We have engaged Nigeria Interbank Settlement System to make use of the Bank Verification Number and we have got Central Securitas Clearing System and the registrars working towards reducing it and there has been a marked reduction. More importantly, we know that there would be no future unclaimed dividends, there would be no addition to the unclaimed dividends profile and we count that as a success.

“We believe that once we solve the identity issues that we have presently, the problem of unclaimed dividends will be a thing of the past. Also we have continued with our education of the market, we are making more efforts towards awareness on what stakeholders need to know to make the market more attractive, make it better and protect the investors more.

Uduk stated that the Commission is continuing the implementation of the 10-year capital market master plan to make the market more attractive to investors.

She said “This year, one of the things we decided to resolve was resolving the unclaimed dividend problems as well as regularisation of multiple accounts. On all counts we have made a lot of strides. Next year we are picking a few other things like derivatives trading, commodities trading ecosystem and strengthening the CIS segment of the market.

The Acting DG maintained that the issues around multiple subscription is still on, and urged affected investors to regularise their accounts so that their shares can become active and the investors can also get the benefits of investing in the market.

“We have given some time for those affected to regularise their accounts. The stockbrokers and registrars are working on that and we believe that in no time we will identify the owners of those accounts and put them together so that those shares will become tradable again.

Uduk stated that the elimination of dividend warrants in the market has been a major game changer and therefore urged investors to register for e-dividend to access the benefits.

“What that means is that when dividends are paid, investors no longer have to wait for warrants by post as these dividends are paid directly into their accounts. That is why we are saying that going forward, accounts without full details, that have not been updated will no longer be allowed to trade.

“This is because we do not want the legacy issues to continue, we don’t want unclaimed dividends to keep growing, we want it to be such that when dividends are paid investors get it directly to their bank accounts. This will also help in making the market more liquid” she added.

FMDQ, Six Listed Coys. Bag CAMCAN Awards


FMDQ Securities Exchange Plc and six listed companies on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), were recognised for their outstanding performances despite the harsh operating environment.

The awards were conferred on the winning companies, following strict analysis of the firms’ performance by the Capital Market Correspondents Association of Nigeria (CAMCAN) in their respective sectors, having been compared with other competing firms in their diverse groupings.

The CAMCAN‘s best profitable company on NSE in 2018 was conferred on Dangote Cement Plc, which was described as controlling 25 per cent of the equities market total capitalisation.

Nestle Plc was recognised as the most profitable company in the Consumer goods Sector of Nigeria’s economy, while Seplat Petroleum Development Company was recognised as the most profitable company in the Nigeria’s oil/gas sector.

Also, Access Bank Plc bagged the CAMCAN 2019 Award as the bank in Nigeria that recorded lowest Non Performing Loan (NPL), Zenith Bank Plc received the most profitable bank in Nigeria award for 2018 financial year, while Transcorp Plc also got the exalted CAMCAN 2019 award as the most improved company in the year.

Presenting the awards, to the winners, The Patron of the association who also doubled as the Managing Director, APT Securities, Mallam Garba Kurfi ,lauded the listed firms and the FMDQ Securities Exchange plc , for their outstanding performance in development of Nigeria’s economy.

The awardees expressed their gratitude to the association, promising to continue to strive in their efforts to sustain and improve in their performances.


SEC Suspends Multiple Accounts Regularisation Indefinitely


The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) says the deadline for regularisation earlier stipulated for shareholders that used different names to purchase of shares now stands suspended.

This was part of the outcome of the third Capital Market Committee (CMC) meeting that held in Lagos, weekend.

Acting Director General of SEC, Ms Mary Uduk who made the disclosure to the press said this measure is to enable shareholders that are having challenges with their details to come up and regularize their holdings, noting that, the commission has discovered that some shareholders are avoiding it due to the fear of prosecution.

According to her, “the Multiple Subscription Committee presented the status of its ongoing engagement with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and Committee of Heads of Banking Operation to display multiple accounts regularization banners in the banking halls all over the country. The Committee also reported that CMOs have commenced the filing of report on regularized accounts with the Commission, on a quarterly basis. Given the relevance of this exercise and the need to create more awareness, the Committee requested for an extension of the deadline of multiple accounts regularization”.

“We are keeping it open for now with no deadline. We are also encouraging investors to take advantage of this to regularise their accounts and claim their dividends”.

Uduk explained that other resolutions that were reached at the meeting include, “Registrars are to discontinue the practice of requesting for confirmation of bank confirmation during the e-DMMS process. CMOs are to display awareness campaign banners of e-DMMS at their offices and Venue of Annual General Meetings (AGM). Capital market operators should also work with the Commission to share awareness information on their social media platforms”

She said the commission also reviewed the request from the Association of Stockbroking Houses of Nigeria (ASHON) for extension of time for compliance on the transfer of complete investor data among operators such as Brokers, Registrars and CSCS, adding that upon completion, the position of the Commission will be communicated to the relevant parties.

Determined to deepen liquidity in the nation’s bourse, the SEC said it is engaging the National Pension Commission (PENCOM) and the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) on securities lending. Ms Mary Uduk, SEC acting Director-General, disclosed this at the third quarter post-Capital Market Committee (CMC) meeting news conference on Friday in Lagos.

Uduk said that the commission was engaging PENCOM on modalities that would permit Pension Fund Administrators (PFAs) to participate in Securities Lending. Securities lending is the act of loaning a stock, derivative or other security to an investor or firm.

Securities lending requires the borrower to put up collateral, whether cash, security or a letter of credit.“We have been engaging not only PENCOM but all local institutional investors that have substantial holding of equities and the essence of having this securities lending is to actually deepen our market.

“All of us are contributing to our own pension accounts and these PFAs are buying equities.“What they do is to buy and hold, they don’t sell and they hold it, so the essence of securities lending is now to give room for them to make money and so that the money will now add up to their own contribution fund.“We have a framework which has been approved and we are encouraging the market to go into self lending by meeting these institutional investors.

“Pension is the highest institutional investor in our market, they will now lend out these securities and when they lend out, it will be credited back to the pension fund account.“At the end of the contract, they will get their securities back.“Instead of holding the securities, they are making money out of it; that is the essence.

“So, we are engaging PENCOM to see it as an investment opportunity, and they have bought into the idea.“We are discussing to see how they can be able to come up with their guideline based on their provision of the Act to allow securitues lending to take place.

“In addition, we are engaging another institutional investor, AMCON.“It is a holistic approach to have a win win situation in our market,” Uduk said

Speaking on e-Dividend Mandate Management System (e-DMMS) introduced to curb unclaimed dividends, Uduk said that a total of 2.82 million had enrolled into the platform at the end of third quarter 2019.

She said that registrars had been directed to discontinue the practice of requesting for confirmation of bank signature during the E-DMMS process to tackle unclaimed dividends.

Uduk said that capital market operators were to display awareness campaign banners of e-DMMS at their offices and venue of Annual General Meetings (AGM).

She stated that the Non-interest Finance Committee presented the importance of granting the PFAs the permission to invest a given percentage of a willing contributor’s Retirement Savings Accounts in Non-Interest capital market products.

Access Bank Appoints Dr. (Mrs.) Ajoritsedere Awosika MFR New Chairman


The Board of Directors of Access Bank Plc has announced that its Chairman, Mrs. Mosun Belo-Olusoga will be retiring in January 2020 following the completion of her maximum 12- year term limit allowed by the Central Bank of Nigeria’s Code of Corporate Governance for Banks and Discount Houses. Mrs Belo-Olusoga became the Chairman of the Board in July 2015.

To lead the Board in the next phase of the Bank’s transformation into becoming Africa’s Gateway to the World, Dr. (Mrs) Ajoritsedere Awosika, MFR has been appointed Chairman of the Bank replacing Mrs Belo-Olusoga who steps down on January 8, 2020.

Dr. Awosika joined the Board in April 2013 as an Independent Non-Executive Director and has been the Chairman and Vice Chairman of the Board Credit and Finance Committee and the Board Audit Committee respectively in addition to membership of other Board Committees.

She is an accomplished administrator with over three decades experience in public sector governance. She was at various times, the Permanent Secretary in the Federal Ministries of Internal Affairs, Science & Technology and Power.

Dr. Awosika is a fellow of the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria and the West African Postgraduate College of Pharmacy. She holds a Doctorate degree in Pharmaceutical Technology from the University of Bradford, United Kingdom.

She is the Chairman of Chams Plc and Josephine Consulting Limited and a Non-Executive Director of Capital Express Assurance Ltd.

A statement signed by the company secretary, Sunday Ekwochi expressed the Board’s  appreciation to Mrs. Belo-Olusoga for her contributions to the Bank’s transformational growth and wished Dr (Mrs.) Awosika success in her new appointment.

ABCON Canvass For Downward Review of Exchange Rate

Aminu Gwadabe -President ABCONAminu Gwadabe -President ABCON
Aminu Gwadabe -President ABCON

The volatility in the exchange rate of the naira to other foreign currencies often associated with the yuletide season is not likely to be witnessed this year, so says Alhaji Aminu Gwadabe, President, Association of Bureau De Change Operators of Nigeria (ABCON)

Alhaji Gwadabe who stated this in a chart with BusinessUpdate expressed optimism that the naira exchange rate will neither be affected by the influx of dollars from diaspora remittances nor will it be affected by outflows from such obligations as  payment of school fees and similar other expenses.

The ABCON president made this declaration against apprehension in some quarters that demand for foreign exchange from Nigerians for businesses and foreign trips as well as inflows from diaspora remittance is likely to upturn the current trend of stability in the forex market.

According to him, this development is not likely to affect the market rates in any way “I do not see anything that will affect the market or alter the rate significantly”

He argued that the market had enjoyed relative stability over the last 30 months and as such is not likely to witness any major upset this season.

The ABCON boss stated that “while I do not foresee any rate hike, the authorities should reduce the rate further”. He insisted that the relative stability that has pervaded the market over the last couple of years has made it imperative for a downward adjustment in the exchange rate.

While calling on the authorities to effect a reduction or downward review of the exchange rate expressed the view that it will further enhance the rates stability that has been enjoyed at least in the last 30 months.

ABCON as an association has remained a major catalyst in ensuring price stability in the nation’s foreign exchange market. The association was formed to enhance ease of accessibility of FOREX to Nigerians at very reasonable pricing.

As members of ABCON, Bureau De Change (BDC) operators facilitate funds transfer to all parts of the world for a number of reasons to carry out legitimate business to fund educational pursuits, to facilitate health concerns, help in the purchase of travellers’’ and other legitimate businesses

Established on the 4th of February 1997, the association has been consistent in upholding and creating an environment of sanctity in the business of foreign exchange.

SEC Announces Q3 2019 CMC Meeting Date


The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has announced that the Third Capital Market Committee (CMC) meeting in 2019 has been scheduled for Thursday November 21 to Friday November 22, 2019 at Harbour Point, 4 Wilmot Point Road, Off Ahmadu Bello Way, Victoria Island, Lagos.

While the key stakeholders in the capital market will meet on November 21, members of the media would be briefed on the outcome of the CMC meeting on November 22.

According to the SEC, “Attendance to both events is strictly by invitation. Invited participants are expected to come with their identity cards to be admitted into the venue and all invited participants are expected to be seated by 9.45am,”

The CMC is an industry-wide committee comprising members of the commission, representatives of capital market operators and trade groups and other stakeholders. The CMC meets every quarter to deliberate on various issues affecting the market and other policy matters.

It was mainly established to serve as a medium for exchange of ideas among market stakeholders as well as for feedback to SEC on how to continuously improve the market activities and regulation.

Issues bordering on implementation of the Ten Year Capital Market Master Plan as well as others relating to the capital market, Fintech Roadmap and the economy would be discussed at the meeting and the outcome made known to the media.

The ten-year master plan for the Nigerian capital market which is expected to refocus the market and help double its size over time and grow the economy was unveiled November 2014.

Recall that the Commission has vigorously implemented some initiatives in the Master Plan with the aim of attracting more investors to the market.

Some of the initiatives, include direct cash settlement, regularisation of multiple subscription, dematerialization, transmission of shares and e-Dividend Registration, as they promote transparency, protect and enhance investors’ confidence in the capital market.

The SEC therefore enjoins all shareholders to take advantage of the initiatives introduced in the capital market aimed, primarily, at strengthening the market and accelerating economic development.

This, SEC said is in consonance with the present administration’s economic strategy focused on deepening the capital market as a vehicle for encouraging a private sector-led economy with enhanced productivity.

Those who have been invited to attend the expanded session are Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) of all registered capital market firms (i.e Broker Dealer, Capital Market Solicitors, Custodians, Fund Managers, Issuing Houses, Rating Agencies, Registrars, Reporting Accountants, Trustees, and Consultants, etc.);

Others are Chief Executive Officers of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD), The Financial Markets Dealers Quotations (FMDQ), Africa Exchange Holdings (AFEX), Nigeria Commodity Exchange (NCX), Central Securities Clearing System (CSCS), Chartered Institute of Stockbrokers (CIS); as well as representatives of relevant Financial Services’ Agencies, among others.

Post Merger: Access Bank Reports Significant Increase In Q3 Profit


Access Bank Plc has released its unaudited financial statements for the period ended September 30, 2019, which clearly show positive figures across most financial indicators.

The breakdown indicates that Access Bank generated N210.21 billion in net interest income as at the period ended September 2019. This represents a 70.98% increase compared to the nine months period of 2018 when the lender recorded N122.94 billion.

It also recorded Profit before Tax of N103.10 billion as profit before tax, up from N70.26 billion, which represents an increase of 46.74%.

The lender recorded a profit after tax of N90.73 billion for the nine-month period of 2019, compared to N62.91 billion recorded in the corresponding  period for 2018. This represents a 42.22% increase in profit.

The bank’s Earnings Per Share of N2.18 as at the end of the third quarter of 2018 moved  up to N2.79 as at the end of the third quarter of 2019.

Also, non-interest income grew by 3.3% y/y to NGN97.74 billion, driven by fees and commissions income (+49.5% y/y to NGN56.01 billion). Consequent, on the increased income from both funded and non-funded sources, operating income settled 42.1% higher year-on-year.

In the same vein Operating Expenses grew significantly by 39.8% y/y, pressured by increased costs related to the merger. Regulatory costs increased significantly due to the expansion in assets from the merger – AMCON levy (+29.5% y/y to NGN22.66 billion); NDIC premium (+39.9% y/y to NGN8.99 billion –, while personnel costs (32.0% y/y to NGN54.70 billion), among others, also spiked during the period.  Nonetheless, given the expansion of operating income relative to operating expenses, the bank’s cost-to-income ratio (ex-LLE) settled lower at 65.3% relative to 66.4% in the prior year. This was enough to drive a substantial increase in profitability, with profit-before-tax and profit-after-tax growth settling higher by 46.7% y/y and 44.2% y/y respectively.

According to analysts  the bank’s macro-prudential ratios are above par, with only the non-performing loans ratio settling above the regulatory limit (6.3% relative to 5.0% statutory limit). While NPLs declined from 6.4% as at H1-19, this could be adduced to the 4.0% growth in total loans over the quarter. All other ratios are settled well above regulatory minimums; Liquidity ratio (48.5% relative to 30.0%), Capital Adequacy (20.3% relative to 16.0%). Also, we note that the bank’s current reported loans to deposit ratio (67.4%) is above the new minimum LDR of 65.0%.



NSE Hosts 7th Capital Market Information Security Forum


By  Andy Nssien

The Nigerian Stock Exchange (“NSE) is to host the 7th edition of its  Nigerian Capital Market Information Security Forum (NCMISF), themed, “The Nigeria Data Protection Regulation: Achieving Compliance.” The bi-annual event is slated for  Thursday, October 31, 2019, at the NSE Event Center, 2-4 Customs Street, Lagos.

A statement from The NSE said the one day free event would bring together leading industry data privacy and security experts and capital market stakeholders to share actionable information on the prevailing data protection regulation which is aimed at achieving privacy by default and privacy by design. The forum will also highlight how organizations can comply with these regulation on an ongoing basis, as a means of protecting client data and boosting investor confidence.

Chief Risk Officer NSE, Rasaq Ozemede said, “the event will provide participants a perfect opportunity to get deeper understanding of present and developing trends in Information Security through case studies on topics ranging from how industry is redefining their Data Protection Regulation practice to developments in protecting Personally Identifiable Information (PII), data protection regimes and share effective strategies and best practices in ensuring information privacy is in compliance with the Nigeria Data Protection Regulation (NDPR) and the international General Data Protection Regulation”.

“This year, we have received sponsorship boost from Zenith Bank Plc and Axa Mansard. We look forward to welcoming more sponsors”, Mr. Ozemede added.

The 7th edition of NCMISF will feature presentations and panel discussions by National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) licensed Data Protection Compliance Organisations (DPCO) such as Michael Ango, Associate Director, Andersen Tax; Akin Oyegoke, Managing Consultant, Johan Consults; John Anyanwu, Partner, Technology Advisory, KPMG Advisory Services and Linus Osita Okeke, Partner, Ernst & Young. Mrs. Oluyemi Obadare, Business Continuity Manager, NSE will also be speaking at the forum.