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Biden Regulatory Moves Will Make ESG the ‘Ultimate Investment Megatrend’

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Biden Regulatory Moves Will Make ESG the ‘Ultimate Investment Megatrend’

Biden’s expected regulatory changes will push environmental, social and governance (ESG) investing “to become the ultimate megatrend,” states the CEO of one of the world’s largest independent financial advisory and fintech organisations.

The bold comment from Nigel Green, chief executive and founder of deVere Group, which has $12bn under advisement, comes as President Joe Biden picks Gary Gensler to head the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the U.S. financial regulator.

Mr Green says: “Joe Biden’s administration is going to usher in an era of serious momentum for responsible and sustainable investing.

“This is not just because of the likely tougher approach to the use of fossil fuels and his campaign’s vow to take swift action to tackle the climate emergency.

“It is also because of the expected appointment of Gary Gensler to lead the SEC, who is likely to heavily reform and broaden ESG investing and corporate disclosure rules in the U.S.

“In doing such, we can assume that Gensler would have the major support on the Commission.”

For instance, upon her appointment as acting SEC chair, Allison Herren Lee said that during her time as a Commissioner, “I have focused on climate and sustainability, and those issues will continue to be a priority for me.”

In The New York Times she wrote that: “Both investors and the broader public need clear information about how businesses are contributing to greenhouse gas emissions, and how they are managing — or not managing — climate risks internally. Realistically, that can happen only through mandatory public disclosure.”

Nigel Green continues: “Should the SEC push ahead with beefing-up green investment rules, as is expected, it will close the transatlantic gap that has emerged in recent years as the European watchdogs pushed ahead with increased stricter ESG investing and disclosure regulations.”

He goes on to add: “At the beginning of 2020, I described ESG investing as a ‘megatrend’ of the decade.  And throughout the year inflow doubled and ESG funds outperformed the market.

“But the tag ‘megatrend’ would now seem somewhat underplayed if the U.S. moves towards ESG-related regulatory reforms and comes into line with Europe.

“Responsible investing will become the ultimate investment megatrend should this happen.”

In a move to encourage clients to consider the ESG opportunities, last month deVere Group announced it is planning to offer free, independent advice on socially responsible investing, with the aim of positioning $1bn in environmental, social and governance (ESG) investments within five years.

The deVere concludes: “The likely rule changes in the U.S. on ESG investing and corporate disclosures are not as yet heavily priced-in to markets.

“Investors should keep a keen eye on this area and move to take advantage of the opportunities.”

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.

Nigerian Stock Exchange

AfDB Approves $400,000 Grant for Securities and Exchange Commission of Nigeria to Support Capital Markets Development

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capital market

The African Development Bank Group today signed a $400,000 grant agreement with the Securities and Exchange Commission of Nigeria to strengthen securities market regulation and broaden market instruments.

The funds will go towards strengthening the risk-based supervision framework, regulation of derivatives and green bonds, and build capacity for green finance. The grant will be sourced from the Capital Markets Development Trust Fund, a multi-donor fund administered by the Bank.

“This collaboration further underscores our mutual goal to grow our markets and create viable avenues for sustainable economic development for Nigeria and the region,” said Lamido Yuguda, Director General of the Securities and Exchange Commission at the virtual signing ceremony.

The grant is aligned with the priorities of the Bank’s Country Strategy for Nigeria, which envisages measures to stimulate capital market development to unlock financial resources for productive sector investments, infrastructure development and private sector growth.

Lamin Barrow, Senior Director of the Bank’s Nigeria Country Department, noted the urgency of the implementation of the project.

“At a time when countries are striving to build back better from the ravages of the COVID-19 pandemic, improvement of the enabling regulatory and supervision framework will boost domestic resource mobilisation efforts and leverage private sector contributions to achieve a greener, more environmentally sustainable and inclusive post-pandemic recovery,” Barrow said.

Oscar Onyema, Chief Executive Officer of the Nigerian Stock Exchange, thanked the African Development Bank Group and the Securities and Exchange Commission “for this historic event and partnership, to build in-house capacity at SEC, the Nigerian Stock Exchange, issuers and investors in the sustainable finance space, which will help to meet climate finance commitments in Nigeria.”

The project will support the implementation of the SEC’s Nigeria Capital Market Master Plan 2015-2025 and its vision to position Nigeria’s capital market as a competitive and attractive destination for portfolio investments.

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Nigerian Stock Exchange

Ardova Plc Profit After Tax Drops by 47.3 Percent to N2.06 Billion in 2020

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Ardova Plc Posts N2.06 Billion Profit After Tax in 2020

Ardova Plc, an indigenous energy group headquartered in Lagos, has declared N2.063 billion for the year ended December 31, 2020.

In the audited financial statements released on Thursday through the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), the amount was 47.3 percent below the N3.915 billion posted in the same period of 2019.

The revenue of the energy company grew from N179.550 billion in 2019 to N181.664 billion in 2020. While the cost of sales inched slightly higher from N165.269 billion achieved in 2019 to N169.558 billion in 2020.

Gross profit stood at N12.107 billion, up from N11.282 billion recorded in 2019.

Profit before income tax moderated from N4.654 billion in 2019 to N3.199 billion in 2020.

Ardova posted N2.063 billion profit after tax in the period under review, down from N3.915 billion attained in 2019.

The company’s total assets stood at N62.443 billion as of December 31, 2020, up from N47.019 billion in 2019.

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Nigerian Stock Exchange

Nestle S.A Increases Stake in Nestle Nigeria, Invests Another N3 Billion

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Nestle S.A Invests Another N2.99 Billion in Nestle Nigeria

A Swiss multinational food and drink processing conglomerate corporation headquartered in Vevey, Vaud, Switzerland, Nestle S.A has invested another N2.922 billion in Nestle Nigeria, according to the latest disclosure statement filed with the Nigerian Stock Exchange.

Nestle S.A, the majority shareholder in Nestle Nigeria, has been increasing its stake in Nestle Nigeria in the last two years.

On March 02, Nestle S.A purchased 1,980,370 shares at N1,348.94 a unit while on March 03, another 186,277 shares were acquired at N1,349.74 per share.

Bringing the total shares purchased to 2,166,647 at an average price of N1,349 per share. Meaning, Nestle S.A invested another N2.922 billion in Nestle Nigeria. See the details below.

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