BUSINESS / MONEY
The All Share Index (ASI) of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE or The Exchange) recorded its biggest daily gain in more than five years, jumping 4.9% on Tuesday, October 6, 2020. The 12-day rally has saw the market capitalization of stocks cross the N15 Trillion mark, bringing the year-to-date gain of ASI to 7.7%.
The benchmark index has climbed 13% in the past month more than any of the 93 other major global indicators tracked by Bloomberg and reclaimed the world’s best-performing market stock, a position it held in February 2020. It was also reported by Bloomberg that this is the longest winning streak the Nigerian Stock Exchange has recorded since July 2017
It is evident that investors are flocking to the stock market in search of positive return given the low interest rate environment and the negative real return environment. It is recalled that on September 22, 2020, following its meeting of the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC), the Central Bank of Nigeria in a surprising gesture lowered the monetary policy rate (MPR) by 100 basis points from 12 , 5% to 11.5%. Within 10 days of the MPR reduction, daily turnover averaged 5.5 billion naira compared to 2.3 billion naira in the corresponding period before the reduction in the MPR. The NSE ASI is also up 13% since the MPC meeting in September.
Looking closely at the performance of the market, we see that investors are targeting Nigerian companies that they believe will best weather the onslaught of COVID-19 and be able to distribute dividends to shareholders. Companies such as Dangote Cement, MTN Nigeria, Zenith Bank, United Bank for Africa, FBN Holdings and Guaranty Trust Bank, which are broadly classified as indicators, have enjoyed significant activity due to their strong fundamentals. This does not mean that other segments of the market have been overlooked. Performance across all sectors was truly impressive, with the Banking, Industrials, Consumer Goods, Oil & Gas and Insurance indices showing positive gains over time.
In terms of market participation, the total value of transactions executed by domestic investors on the Nigerian Stock Exchange in the first eight months of the year amounted to N731 billion compared to N470.20 billion in the last eight months. the same period. This shows that domestic investors outperformed transactions executed by foreign investors by N260.8 billion or 55.47 percent. While retail investors have been active in the market, pension fund administrators (AFPs) have been the largest net buyers in the market as monthly contributions from contributors to the fund are made. The return of domestic investors, especially PFAs, to the market is remarkable and analysts agree that it can generate new flows or at least help maintain gains.
The growing interest in the equity market is also a clear sign of the growing investor confidence brought about by The Exchange’s remarkable business, especially during this pandemic. NSE, for its part, has demonstrated its remarkable resilience in maintaining a thriving capital market, even in the face of work and remote trading. In line with its commitment to provide an accessible platform for listing and trading activities, NSE recorded market quotes worth more than 1.42 trillion naira from March 24 to September 24.
In addition, NSE continued to implement its commitment to improve market integrity, reduce market asymmetry and improve the flow of market information with the upgrade of several platforms. . It should be remembered that The Exchange has released an upgrade to its data portal, X-Data Portal; Issuer platform, X-Issuer; and its alert portal, X-Whistle, in recent months.
The upgrade of the X-DataPortal is in line with the NSE’s desire to continue to provide an easily accessible exchange by taking advantage of digital technology. Speaking in an interview, NSE CEO Mr. Oscar N. Onyema, OON said: The new X-DataPortal has been equipped with market-driven features that will complement the NSE website and other NSE portals in response to increased stakeholder demand for easy access to data. Given the importance of market data in investment decisions, we remain committed to our commitment to provide financial market participants with more channels to access the relevant market information needed to make investment decisions.
In addition, the Exchange has introduced its revamped X-Issuer to the market with new features that will allow easy, convenient and more reliable submission and dissemination of company information, corporate actions, director share information. and insiders, financial statements, earnings forecasts, meeting notices. , and much more. It is expected that the enhanced X-Issuer will further improve the issuer experience and accelerate the settlement of post-listing bonds in a cost effective and efficient manner.
The exchange also prioritizes investor protection, evidenced by the introduction of the improved X-Whistle. Executive Director, Regulatory Division, NSE, Ms Tinuade Awe, noted: The Exchange is pleased to bring the enhanced X-Whistle to the market with robust features that will allow people with fault information to come forward for report it and provide all stakeholders with the means to voice their concerns in a responsible and effective manner. In 2019 alone, complaints, advice and referrals received led to investor restitution of over 1.4 billion naira. The X-Whistle will therefore provide the Exchange with the necessary tools to properly assess reports, conduct necessary investigations, and resolve issues effectively.
The financial markets ecosystem has clearly reaped the benefits of a consistent and consistent capacity building in business innovation, technology, automation and digitization of NSE operations. The resilience that the Nigerian stock market has shown in these difficult times is indeed remarkable. Since the activation of its business continuity plan on Monday March 23, 2020, stock exchange employees have been working remotely since Tuesday March 24, 2020, while member trading companies have been trading remotely and transparently since Wednesday 25. March 2020.
The Exchange continued to maintain trading activities during normal trading hours and did not experience any disruption in its activities. Rather, it continued to actively seek ways to deepen the capital market, actively involve stakeholders, and expand the pool of investment instruments for investors with new rosters and capacity building exercises. These efforts have resulted in some impressive innovations which have been incorporated as usual into The Exchange.
As the market continues to ride the wave of the equity market, it has also been reported that the introduction of Exchange Traded Derivatives (ETDs) in the Nigerian market is imminent. This is in light of the successful registration of NG Clearing by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) as a fully functioning elite Central Counterpart Clearing House (CCP) in Africa. The approval in principle will allow the Exchange to launch ETDs supported by NG Clearing in the risk management process. Created by key players in the Nigerian financial sector including NSE, the Central Securities Clearing System (CSCS) and leading banks, NG Clearing will play a key role in the financial market ecosystem by promoting market security and stability. Africa’s global market through timely and timely settlement of derivative transactions.
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