- Stanbic IBTC Pension Boss Sees Huge Growth Opportunities in Pension Sector
The Chief Executive Officer, Stanbic IBTC Pension Managers, Eric Fajemisinmi, has said that despite the numerous challenges currently facing Nigeria’s economy, there are still huge growth opportunities in the pension sector administration and management.
Fajemisinmi, therefore said his company would leverage on the micro pension scheme, when the scheme finally kicks off, to increase the number of its Retirement Savings Account (RSA) holders.
Fajemisinmi, who stated this at a media parley organised by his company in Lagos recently, noted that micro pension scheme is another way of increasing pension adoption.
Describing Micro Pension as the pension industry’s strategic initiative to have inclusive and expanded pension coverage, the IBTC Pensions boss, noted that the 7. 3 million Nigerians registered under the Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS) is a far cry from a population of 180 million Nigerians.
He said that the micro pension scheme, will be targeting the informal sector of the economy, which is about 70 per cent of the country’s population.
Expressing the hope that the scheme will commence next year, he said the regulator, the National Pension Commission (PenCom) is currently in advanced discussion with the federal government to add good incentive to the scheme to attract the informal sector into it.
He said this has become necessary because the micro pension by its nature is different from the joint contribution like the current CPS.
“The scheme must have a sweetener to attract the informal sector into it. PenCom is currently proposing to the FG to either give tax incentives or access to loans to the would-be beneficiaries, as this will persuade more operators in the informal sector to embrace it. Definitely, there must be something to attract people to subscribe to it and that is currently being worked out,” he stressed.
He promised that IBTC Pension Fund Managers has put all machineries in place to key into the scheme, as soon as it is launched.
Fajemisinmi, also lauded the reforms being put in place by PenCom through the Pension Reforms Act (PRA 2014), noting that this has further strengthened the scheme.
He listed some of the improvements in the guideline to include; compulsory payment of pension by state governments, reduction in the number of employees a company must have to subscribe to CPS, from five to three, among others.
Stanbic IBTC Pension, he said, had invested in bonds and equities, which currently give good returns on investment to its numerous RSA holders across the country.
In a bid to continue to serve the customers better, he stated that the PFA has launched a new app on Play Store to allow customers enjoy seamless services.
Gold Gained Ahead of Joe Biden Inauguration 2021
Gold price rose from one and a half month low on Tuesday ahead of President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration on Wednesday.
The precious metal, largely regarded as a haven asset by investors, edged up by 0.2 percent to $1,844.52 per ounce on Tuesday, up from $1,802.61 on Monday.
He said, “The key factor appears to be the (U.S.) currency.”
As expected, a change in administration comes with the change in economic policies, especially taking into consideration the peculiarities of the present situation. In fact, even though Biden, Janet Yellen and the rest of the new cabinet are expected to go all out on additional stimulus with the support of Democrats controlled Houses, economic uncertainties with rising COVID-19 cases and slow vaccine distribution remained a huge concern.
Also, the effectiveness of the vaccines can not be ascertained until wider rollout.
Still, which policy would be halted or sustained by the incoming administration remained a concern that has forced many investors to once again flee other assets for Gold ahead of tomorrow’s inauguration.
Crude Oil Holds Steady Above $55 Per Barrel on Tuesday
Brent Crude oil, against which Nigerian crude oil is priced, rose from $54.46 per barrel on Monday to $55.27 per barrel as of 9:03 am Nigerian time on Tuesday.
Last week, Brent crude oil rose to 11 months high of $57.38 per barrel before pulling back on rising COVID-19 cases and lockdowns in key global economies like the United Kingdom, Euro-Area, China, etc.
While OPEC has left 2021 oil demand unchanged and President-elect Joe Biden has announced a $1.9 trillion stimulus package, experts are saying the rising number of new cases of COVID-19 amid poor vaccine distribution could drag on growth and demand for oil in 2021.
On Friday, Dan Yergin, vice-chairman at IHS Markit, said in addition to the stimulus package “There are two other things that are going with it … one is of course, vaccinations — in the sense that eventually this crisis is going to end, and maybe by the spring, lockdowns will be over.”
“The other thing is what Saudi Arabia did. This is the third time Saudi Arabia has made a sudden change in policy in less than a year, and this one was to announce (the) 1 million barrel a day cut — partly because they are worried about the impact of the surge in virus that’s occurring,” he said.
Also, the stimulus being injected into the United States economy could spur huge Shale production and disrupt OPEC and allies’ efforts at balancing the global oil market in 2021.
Crude Oil Pulled Back Despite Joe Biden Stimulus
Crude oil pulled back on Friday despite the $1.9 trillion stimulus package announced by U.S President-elect, Joe Biden.
Brent crude oil, against which Nigeria’s oil is priced, pulled back from $57.38 per barrel on Wednesday to $55.52 per barrel on Friday in spite of the huge stimulus package announced on Thursday.
On Thursday, OPEC, in its latest outlook for the year, said uncertainties remain high in 2021 with the number of COVID-19 new cases on the rise.
OPEC said, “Uncertainties remain high going forward with the main downside risks being issues related to COVID-19 containment measures and the impact of the pandemic on consumer behavior.”
“These will also include how many countries are adapting lockdown measures, and for how long. At the same time, quicker vaccination plans and a recovery in consumer confidence provide some upside optimism.”
Governments across Europe have announced tighter and longer coronavirus lockdowns, with vaccinations not expected to have a significant impact for the next few months.
“The complex remains in pause mode, a development that should not be surprising given the magnitude of the oil price gains that have been developing for some 2-1/2 months,” Jim Ritterbusch, president of Ritterbusch and Associates, said.
Still, OPEC left its crude oil projections unchanged for the year. The oil cartel expected global oil demand to increase by 5.9 million barrels per day year on year to an average of 95.9 million per day in 2020.
But also OPEC expects a recent rally and stimulus to boost U.S. Shale crude oil production in the year, a projection Investors King experts expect to hurt OPEC strategy in 2021.
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