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Experts Seek Improved Regulation of Forex Market

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500 and 1000 naira bills (Nigerian currency)
  • Experts Seek Improved Regulation of Forex Market

Experts from foreign exchange investment firms have called on the Federal Government to regulate the Foreign Exchange Investment market in Nigeria.

The experts said that improved regulation would help to reduce the risks and fears and boost investment in the sector.

Some investors from a foreign investment firm, MBA Forex International, its partners AFX Group UK and Fintec Global Markets, who were members of a panel session, spoke at a one- day financial investors summit in Lagos.

The panellists were the Chief Executive Officer, MBA Forex International, Mr Maxwell Odum; AFX Group UK Business Development and Sales associate, Mr Claude Harvard; its Head of Back office and Trade Desk, Mrs Natalia Stetco and the Country Manager, Fintech Global Markets, Joel Adoki.

Adoki said that to keep risk level minimal and to control people’s investment, government must regulate the forex sector.

“If people see government’s involvement in it, they will want to come in, because the regulatory body can stand as the middle man between the broker and the investors and the regulatory body will ensure also that the brokers do not use investors’ money to run their own personal affairs,” he said.

Havard, on his own part, noted that investors’ money could only be protected better by government regulatory body, to ensure a stable and fraud-free market.

He said, “Investors money can only be protected by government regulatory body. The body becomes the middleman between the brokers and investors. Most times, investors cheat the brokers by using anonymous software and all other forms of fraudulent applications. The only common ground is the regulatory body to ensure protection.

“The financial world is changing and there are lots of opportunities that Nigerians can explore. Most of the brokers operating in Nigeria are not regulated and this has made a lot of people to get the wrong information and act wrongly.”

Natalio, on her part, said government must ensure the market was protected from the inside.

“We should all work to ensure that everything is fully regulated. It is important for the government to know that the industry must be protected from inside,” she said.

Odum, emphasised the need for Nigerian currency to be quoted in the forex market.

Odum said, “The summit is timely when we need to give financial stability in our economy, to individual’s life and making sure everyone have opportunities to gain financial freedom.”

He said the financial investment plans, which was in the area of foreign exchange trading, was quite expedient at a time when many Nigerians were complaining about financial difficulty, but would not mind exploring opportunities that could guarantee stable means of livelihood.

According to Odum, the financial firm and its partners understood that many Nigerians required useful information that could enhance their decision making, regarding investment plans and as such, MBA Forex Institute was partnering with others to provide a platform through which doubts could be cleared which could assist investors in making the right decision.

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 market.

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Finance

Naira Mastercard: GTBank Reduces International Spending Limit to $100/Month

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GTBank Further Caps International Spending Limit on Naira Mastercard

Forex scarcity has forced Guaranty Trust Bank (GTB) to further reduce the international spending limit on its Naira Mastercard from $500 per month to $100 per month.

The lender had reduced international spending limit from $3,000 per month set in 2018 to $1,500 per month in March 2020 when COVID-19 eroded the nation’s foreign reserves.

We would like to inform you that the monthly spending limit on your GTBank Naira Mastercard has been reviewed from $3,000 to $1,500 for your international online and POS transactions effective March 25, 2020” GTBank stated in March.

However, persistent foreign exchange scarcity has forced the lender to once again reduced its international spending limit from $1,500 per month to $500 per month in the same March before finally reducing to $100 per month on August 11, 2020.

According to the bank, the new limit will affects online, PoS and ATM transactions, both transactions done in Nigeria and abroad.

The notice reads “Dear customer, the monthly spending limit on your GTBank Naira Mastercard is now $100 for international transactions. Thank you for banking with us.”

Customers have said GTbank has also implemented the Central Bank of Nigeria’s recent policy of ‘no cash withdrawal of transferred funds into domiciliary accounts.’

Only electronic fund transfers into Domiciliary accounts can be transferred from such accounts while cash deposits into such accounts can only be withdrawn in cash also,” said Isaac Okorafor, Director, Corporate Communications.

Therefore, customers of GTBank and other Deposit Money Banks are advised to check with their banks for the latest developments that may hurt their operations.

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Magu Probe: FCMB Denies Paying Money into Pastor’s Account

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No Money Was Paid Into Pastor’s Account, FCMB Tells Nigerians

Following a widely publicised report that the Managing Director of FCMB Group Plc claimed that he mistakenly transferred N573 million to an account of Magu’s pastor, the lender has come out to refute the report.

In a statement released by the FCMB Group on Wednesday, the bank said the report was false as there was no transfer of such amount into the said account.

This, the bank said was clarified during the presidential hearing in Abuja by the bank’s Managing Director.

According to the bank, the error had occurred only on file during a system upgrade in 2016. This upgrade, the bank claimed led to multiple unrelated entries into a single account under the affected customer’s name on one of the lender’s reports.

The bank’s statement reads “Our attention has been drawn to widely circulating stories incorrectly stating that our Managing Director, during a recent presidential hearing in Abuja, testified that the bank mistakenly transferred N573m to the account of a church and the said error was not discovered for 4 years. We feel it is in the public interest to state emphatically that there was no transfer of N573m into this account, mistakenly or otherwise.

“To provide further clarity, during a maintenance upgrade of our systems in 2016, a defective file led to the aggregation of multiple unrelated entries into a single balance under the affected customer’s name in one of our reports.

“This aggregation occurred only in the weekly automated report to the Nigerian Financial Intelligence Unit. It had no effect on any customer account balance or statements and therefore was not immediately identified.

“Our Managing Director clarified to the Presidential panel that the system generated report was incorrect and that there was no mistaken transfer of N573 million. He also submitted comprehensive documentary evidence to this effect.

“We appreciate that comments may have been misconstrued and therefore believe it is important to emphatically clarify the position that there was no mistaken transfer whatsoever, as stated above.

“FCMB continues to fully cooperate with the panel, and has been entirely transparent in its reporting. We remain committed to ethical and professional conduct at all times.”

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FG Implores Parastatals to Promote the Country’s Digital Economy Initiative

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FG Tells MDAs to Promote the Country’s Digital Economy

The Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy under the management of Dr. Isa Pantami, has implored all the federal government parastatals to promote and safeguard the country’s digital economy initiative.

Dr. Isa Pantami, while presenting the keynote address in a virtual forum organised by the Association of Telecoms Companies of Nigeria (ATCON),  said based on the negative effects of COVID-19 pandemic, the demand for critical data infrastructure and broadband is now high.

The minister urged government parastatals to put in effort to uphold and promote government’s digital economy initiative designed to reduce the effect of the pandemic on the nation. He also disclosed that the interests of all Nigerians would also be protected by the government.

Federal government will continue to develop its digital economy policy for a digital Nigeria. Both the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) and the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA) that are under the supervision of my ministry, now have special departments that promotes digital economy initiative and I urge them and all other parastatals under my supervision, to ensure that they promote the digital economy initiative of the federal government in order to maintain investor’s confidence and to protect the interest of Nigerians, especially telecoms consumers.

Government on its part will ensure that the interests of telecoms companies and the interest of Nigerians are protected. Government is currently addressing the challenges in the cost of investments such as the issue of vandalisation of telecoms infrastructure, and President Muhammadu Buhari has officially directed all security institutes, through the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA), to protect telecoms investments in the country,” Pantami said.

The Executive Vice Chairman of NCC, Prof. Umar Garba Danbatta, when making his presentation said “The COVID-19 pandemic rapidly and sharply ravaged the globe, Nigeria is no exception. Governments therefore, faced unprecedented challenges from COVID-19 pandemic. The impact affects most sectors of the global economy, ranging from health, to education, to finance, to trade and investment.

While explaining the Commission’s efforts at resolving consumer-related issues, Danbatta noted that less than 500,000 people activated Do-Not-Disturb (DND) code as at 2015 when the code was introduced by the Commission but presently, over 22,722,366 people line on the code.

He also made it known that the commission has resolved 98 per cent of service-related complaints received from telecoms consumers from January 2019 to April 2020.

according to Danbatta “the Commission has monthly engagements with operators as well as quarterly industry working group on Quality of Service and Short Codes, and is currently monitoring 2G Key Performance Indicators, while the KPIs for 4G are being prepared.

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