The Suspicious Transaction Report unit of the Nigeria Financial Intelligence Unit (NFIU) has flagged over N150 trillion in suspicious transactions in the first quarter (Q1) of 2022.
In the Suspicious Transaction Report/Suspicious Activity Report released on Sunday, the financial intelligence watchdog disclosed that the amount represented a 23% increase when compared to the N108.5 trillion flagged in Q1, 2021, Investors King reports.
The report noted that a substantial amount of the flagged transactions were traced to political spending ahead of the 2023 general elections.
According to the report, the transactions were reported by banks, insurance firms, microfinance banks, assets management companies, brokers, and other financial institutions.
This is in line with the Money Laundering Prohibition Act of 2011 which mandated banks and all other financial institutions to report suspicious transactions to anti-graft agencies.
Commercial banks accounted for a significant number of suspicious transactions, followed by merchant banks, asset management companies, and then microfinance banks.
Meanwhile, the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC) has intensified efforts at tracking campaign spending by political parties and politicians ahead of the 2023 polls.
Multiple sources claimed that the anti-graft agency has deployed its operatives to track candidates’ campaign spending and monitor their bank accounts as part of actions to combat money laundering which is often prevalent during election periods.
In May 2022, operatives of the EFCC stormed the venue of the PDP convention to apprehend anyone engaging in suspicious currency transactions.
Similarly, in June, the anti-graft agency visited the APC convention venue for the same purpose.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) however reported that no arrest was made at both convention grounds despite several reports of foreign currencies exchanging hands at both events.
Investors King understands that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has fixed the 2023 general election to February 25 and 11th March 2023 for both the Federal and States elections respectively.
FirstBank UK Enhances Fixed-Income Workflow Through Bloomberg Integration
FirstBank UK, the UK subsidiary of First Bank Nigeria Limited, has announced its onboarding on Bloomberg’s Trade Order Management System (TOMS) to enhance its fixed-income workflow.
The integration with TOMS is expected to provide FirstBank UK with access to a comprehensive suite of data and analytics, communications, order, and execution management solutions, streamlining its fixed-income bonds business.
As a niche market-maker for its customers in Africa, FirstBank UK plays a vital role in providing market liquidity in cash bonds, particularly in Nigerian, Angolan, Egyptian, and Ghanaian Eurobonds, to manage risk and optimize its inventory.
Olukorede Adenowo, CEO-designate at FirstBank UK, expressed enthusiasm about the integration, stating, “Bloomberg TOMS provides FirstBank UK with a complete end-to-end trading workflow covering African bonds in most of our home markets. The solution enables us to focus on expanding our footprint in the African Fixed Income landscape and deliver a first-in-kind service to our customers in Africa.”
Bloomberg’s TOMS is renowned for enhancing operational efficiency across enterprises. Lisa Bravo, Global Head of Sell-Side OMS at Bloomberg, commented, “We are pleased to help FirstBank UK enhance operational efficiency across its enterprise with our award-winning sell-side order management solution TOMS.”
FirstBank UK had previously digitized its order management workflow by offering clients access to liquidity on its Eurobond Single-Dealer Platform.
The recent integration with Bloomberg TOMS aims to centralize order handling, aggregated custom analytics, and liquidity tools within a single interface, facilitating real-time access to liquidity for customers.
Robert Hagenaars, Head of Markets at FirstBank UK, highlighted the unique feature of real-time access to liquidity in their markets, providing a distinct advantage for their customers.
This move signifies FirstBank UK’s commitment to leveraging advanced technological solutions to fortify its position in the African Fixed Income market and deliver enhanced services to its clientele.
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