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Nigerian Banks Loss N372B in Equities

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Nigerian Exchange Limited - Investors King

Banking stocks suffered the most among 25 top losers in the equities’ market as share price decline left investors with a net capital loss of N372 billion.

There were 10 banking stocks among the top 25 that lost 30 per cent and above in the past eight months. Some of the top losers recorded as much as 60.1 per cent in equities price reduction.

Conversely, only one banking stock made the few top gainers’ within the period. Altogether, there are 15 banking stocks quoted on the Nigerian stock market.

Three other banking stocks recorded various gains, while a bank dropped by 12.3 per cent.

Investors in banking stocks have suffered the highest losses with nearly three-quarters of quoted banking stocks running with double-digit losses. Losses in the banking sector generally significantly outweighed the overall market’s average loss, according to data review by The Nation.

The benchmark indices for the Nigerian stock market indicated eight-month average decline of 3.64 per cent, equivalent to a loss of N372 billion. Aggregate market value of all quoted companies on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) closed August at N9.479 trillion as against its year’s opening value of N9.851 trillion. The All Share Index (ASI), which tracks prices at the Exchange, dropped to 27,599.03 points by the month-end as against its year’s opening index of 28,642.25 points.

Banking stocks were deep in the red with the troubled Skye Bank leading the top 25 losers with year-to-date loss of 60.13 per cent. The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had sacked the board and management of Skye Bank over corporate governance issues. Diamond Bank followed with a loss of 54.35 per cent. Other top losers in the banking sector included Ecobank Transnational Incorporate, -31.3 per cent; Fidelity Bank, -40.67 per cent; Sterling Bank, -49.18 per cent; Union Bank of Nigeria, -39.13 per cent; Unity Bank, -30.36 per cent; Wema Bank, -34.0 per cent; FBN Holdings, -40.53 per cent and FCMB Group, which market value had dropped by 39.64 per cent. Stanbic IBTC Holdings meanwhile dropped by 12.3 per cent within the period.

While consolidation, steep price declines and emergence of highly capitalised non-bank stocks such as Dangote Cement had reduced the hitherto overwhelming dominance of the market by banking stocks, banking stocks still account for some 25 per cent of the total market value of the Nigerian equities market.

Head, financial advisory group, GTI Capital Group, Mr. Kehinde Hassan, said the negative performance of the banking sector was weighing heavily on the overall market performance.

He noted that the unstable policy environment and the knee-jerk approach of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to regulatory decisions have compounded the tough operating environment for banks, many of which had warned of lower earnings due to the headwinds.

Only Guaranty Trust Bank (GTB) ranked within the top gainers’ list with 8-month gain of 45.76 per cent. United Bank for Africa (UBA) meanwhile posted a heartwarming return of 28.7 per cent. Access Bank followed with 14 per cent while Zenith Bank, against all expectations, trailed with a modest gain of 6.05 per cent.

Other top losers for the period included Livestock Feeds, -33.1 per cent; UACN Property Development Company, -42.5 per cent; Honeywell Flour Mills, -35.12 per cent; Vitafoam Nigeria, -43.99 per cent; AIICO, -30.77 per cent; Union Homes and Savings, -39.24; Fidson Healthcare, -32 per cent; GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Nigeria, -45.88 per cent; Berger Paints, -31.1 per cent; Cement Company of Northern Nigeria, -35.8 per cent; Lafarge Africa, -40.1 per cent; Portland Paints and Products Nigeria, -53.2 per cent; Forte Oil, -47 per cent; Tourist Company of Nigeria, -43.1 per cent and Caverton Offshore Support Group, which lost 40.9 per cent.

Nigerian equities have writhed under sustained losses in the past 32 months. Aggregate market value of all quoted equities on the NSE closed 2015 at N9.851 trillion as against its opening value of N11.478 trillion for the year, representing a loss of N1.627 trillion. The ASI indicated a negative full-year average return of -17.36 per cent. The ASI closed 2015 at 28,642.25 points as against its opening index of 34,657.15 points.

The losses in 2015 worsened the downtrend that had in 2014 marked out Nigerian equities among the worst-performing stocks globally with average full-year decline of 16.14 per cent. Aggregate market value of all quoted equities had closed 2014 at N11.478 trillion as against its opening value of N13.226 trillion for the year, indicating a loss of N1.75 trillion during the year.

Altogether, investors have lost more than N3.75 trillion in the past 32 months as the stock market groaned under political tension, steep decline in crude oil prices, foreign exchange crisis, uncertain policies and other domestic and global macroeconomic concerns.

The second half of 2016 has however seen considerable share price recovery compared with the steep losses in the first half. In the first quarter alone, Nigerian equities had recorded a net loss of N1.15 trillion.

Notwithstanding the negative overall market situation, many stocks have posted substantial returns so far this year. Dangote Flour Mills, which saw the reemergence of Aliko Dangote’s Dangote Industries Limited as the core investor, recorded the highest gain of 240.7 per cent. E-Tranzact followed with a gain of 97.4 per cent. United Capital returned 74.8 per cent while Total Nigeria posted eight-month return of 63.3 per cent. Other top gainers included Presco, 37.2 per cent; AG Leventis, 43.6 per cent; Union Dicon Salt, 39.3 per cent; Neimeth International Pharmaceutical, 32.6 per cent; DN Meyer, 30 per cent; Seplat Petroleum Development Company, 49.4 per cent; Eterna, 33.7 per cent and RAK Unity, a second-tier stock that posted a year-to-date return of 61.3 per cent.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

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Finance

Tanzania: African Development Fund Approves $116 Million Loan to Upgrade Southern Road Corridor

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Afdb - Investors King

The Board of Directors of the African Development Fund on Wednesday approved a loan of around $116 million to the Tanzanian government to upgrade a 160-km Mnivata-Newala-Masasi road corridor in the southern part of the country.

The Bank’s loan represents 98.71% of the project cost; the government of Tanzania will provide the remaining 1.29% in funding.

The project will upgrade the roadway, including the 84-meter Mwiti bridge, to bituminous standard. The works also have social components, including the provision of potable water, education and medical infrastructure, the establishment of cashew nut processing units, and extension of entrepreneurial training to women and youth.

The upgrade is expected to open up rural areas in the region and enhance the Mtwara Development Corridor, which links Mtwara Port and Mbamba Bay port on Lake Nyasa. Exporters, importers, small-scale cross-border traders, farmers, transporters are all expected to benefit.

“The periodic isolation of such a significant population worsens vulnerability and undermines social inclusion. Improved road connectivity would therefore build the resilience of the people and widen livelihood opportunities within the Mtwara Development Corridor and the surrounding districts,” Bank Director General for East Africa Nnenna Nwabufo said.

Overall, the five-year project will improve mobility and accessibility for about 1.1 million people in Mtwara, Tandahimba, Newala and Masasi districts and facilitate integration with neighbouring Mozambique, Malawi and Zambia.

Currently, the districts of Tandahimba and Newala, with an estimated combined population of 509,000 people, are mostly cut off, while connection with the Mtwara port area for essential supplies is severely constrained during rainy seasons due to the state of the road.

The project will advance Tanzania’s current five-year Development Plan (2021-2026) and aligns with the Bank Group’s Country Strategy Paper (2021-2025) which emphasizes sustainable infrastructure for a competitive economy and an improved private sector business environment for job creation, as well as two High-5 strategic priorities: Integrate Africa and Improve the quality of life for the people of Africa.

At 30 June 2021, the Bank Group’s active portfolio in Tanzania comprised 22 operations (19 public and 3 private) with a total commitment of about $2.4 billion.

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Banking Sector

FirstBank Expands Its International Money Transfer Network, Reinforces its Commitment to Customer Service

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FirstBank Headquarter - Investors King

In furtherance of the need to expand diaspora remittance inflow into the country, First Bank of Nigeria Limited has increased its network of International Money Transfer Operators (IMTOs), targeted at easing the accessibility of its customers to receive money from close to 100 countries across the world in a safe and secured manner. With over 750 branches across the country, customers can receive money from the nearest FirstBank branch closest to them.

Over the years, FirstBank has been in partnership with Western UnionMoneyGram, Ria, Transfast, and WorldRemit. The bank is also in partnership with other IMTOs which include Wari, Smallworld, Sendwave, Flutherwave, Funtech, Thunes and Venture Garden Group to promote remittance inflow into the country, thereby putting Nigerians and residents at an advantage in receiving money from their families, friends and loved ones across the world.

Beneficiaries can receive remittance in US dollars in any of our over 750 branches spread across the country. Customers without an existing domiciliary account can have dollar account automatically created for their remittances. You can also receive inflow directly into your account through Western Union.

In addition, FirstBank has launched its wholly owned remittance platform named First Global Transfer product to promote the international transfer of funds across its subsidiaries in sub-Saharan Africa. These subsidiaries include FBNBank DRC, FBNBank Ghana, FBNBank Gambia, FBNBank Guinea, FBNBank Sierra-Leone, FBNBank Senegal.

Reiterating the Bank’s resolve in promoting diaspora remittances, regardless of where one is across the globe, the Deputy Managing Director, Mr Gbenga Shobo said “at FirstBank, expanding our network of International Money Transfer Operators is in recognition of the significant roles diaspora remittances play in driving economic growth such as helping recipients meet basic needs, fund cash and non-cash investments, finance education, foster new businesses and debt servicing.

We are excited about these partnerships, as it is essential to ensure our customers are at an advantage to receive money from their loved ones and business associates, anywhere they are, across the world.”

FirstBank pioneered international funds transfer and remittances over 25 years ago and has been at the forefront of promoting cross border payments in the country, having started the journey with Western Union Money Transfer. The Bank’s wealth of experience and operation in over 750 locations nationwide gives it the edge in the market.

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Finance

Private Sector Seeks FG’s Directive on VAT Payment

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Value added tax - Investors King

The Organised Private Sector of Nigeria (OPSN) on Sunday in Lagos called on the Federal Government to urgently make a pronouncement on the ongoing controversy over VAT payment so that businesses will know what to do.

OPSN chairman, Mr Taiwo Adeniyi, made the call at a news conference and said delays in addressing the issue could cause negative effects on businesses, most especially in the collection and remittances of VAT.

“We are aware that by Sept. 21 we get penalised if we do not pay or remit the VAT for the month of August.

“We are also aware that laws are not made in retrospect. It then means that even if those laws have been enacted, particularly the Lagos State law which came into effect in September, it will not affect the payment by businesses in the state.

“Due to our remittances, we have issues with the fact that the law for Rivers was made in August and the majority of the businesses in Lagos usually will have a relationship with the Rivers State Inland Revenue too.

“The confusion in the public space is the reason we are calling on the government to come to our aid as we want to pay.

“It is for the government at the center to make a pronouncement as to what becomes of us,’’ he said.

Adeniyi, who is also the President of, Nigeria’s Employers Consultative Association (NECA), said that the ongoing challenge had the potential to make businesses pay double VAT in view of demands by the FIRS and state governments.

He said that businesses, as the collecting agents, were practically unclear on the authority to remit to and without a clear path, this would further aggravate the pain on businesses.

“It is a popular saying that where two elephants fight, it is the grass that suffers.

“It is no longer news that Nigerian businesses have been battling with myriads of challenges, making the survival of enterprises and ease of doing business in the country among the worst in this part of the world,’’ he said.

There has been controversy over the collection of VAT after a Federal High Court ruled that it was not the duty of the Federal Government to collect the tax.

VAT is normally collected by the Federal Government since the military era and the money is shared by the three tiers of government.

Following the court ruling, however, Lagos and Rivers states passed laws that allowed them to collect VAT.

FIRS, which used to collect the VAT on behalf of the Federal Government, has challenged the court ruling at the appellate court.

OPSN comprises the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, the Nigeria Association of Chambers of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture, NECA, Nigeria Association of Small Scale Industries and the Nigeria Association of Small and Medium Enterprises.

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