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NSE: Unity Bank, Airtel Africa lead losers’ chart, as investors’ net worth dipped by N90 billion

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NSE’s indices drop further by 0.13%

…Investment tribunal seeks jurisdiction beyond capital market transactions***

The Nigerian equities market resumed trading week on Monday with a loss of 0.74 per cent, as investors’ net worth dipped by N90 billion in value with market capitalisation declining to N13.423 trillion against N13.522 trillion on Friday.

Specifically, the All Share Index (ASI) shed 204.68 points or 0.74 per cent to close at 27,574.32 against 27,779.000 achieved on Friday, following losses achieved by medium and large equities.

The downturn was impacted by losses recorded in medium and large capitalised stocks, amongst which are; Airtel Africa, Chemical and Allied Products (CAP), Cement Company of Northern Nigeria (CCNN), Dangote Cement and Unilever Nigeria.

Reviewing the market performance, analysts at Afrinvest Limited said, “In line with the trend, we expect the bearish performance to continue in the absence of any positive driver.

“Nevertheless, we do not rule out the possibility of bargain hunting activities driving positive performance in subsequent sessions.”

However, market breadth closed positive, with 25 gainers compared with 13 losers.

Unity Bank and Airtel Africa led the losers’ chart in percentage terms, dropping 10 per cent each to close at 63k and N315 per share, respectively.

Chams followed with a decline of 7.69 per cent to close at 24k per share.

Initiates dropped 6.67 per cent to close at 70k, while CAP shed 6.06 per cent to close at N23.25 per share.

Conversely, Cornerstone Insurance recorded the highest price gain of 10 per cent, to close at 33k per share.

NEM Insurance followed with 9.55 per cent to close at N1.95, while Okomu Oil grew by 9.30 per cent to close at N53.90 per share.

Cadbury Nigeria rose by 8.37 per cent to close at N11.65, while Livestock Feeds appreciated by 7.69 per cent to close at 42k, per share.

Also read: NSE market capitalisation rises by N142bn on post-election tribunal outcome

In spite of the drop in market indices, the total volume of shares traded rose by 62.4 per cent with an exchange of 271.24 million shares valued at N2.91 billion traded in 4,795 deals.

This was against 165.34 million shares valued at N2.621 billion traded in 3270 deals on Friday.

FBN Holdings topped the activity chart with 56.58 million shares valued at N309.25 million.

Guaranty Trust Bank followed with 25.93 million shares worth N731.45 million, while Access Bank traded 15.89 million shares valued at N118.55 million.

Zenith Bank traded 15.75 million shares valued at N306.36 million, while Fidelity Bank transacted 14.77 million shares worth N26.33 million.

In the meantime, determined to ensure speedy resolution of financial market disputes, the Investment and Securities Tribunal (IST) on Monday called for expansion of its jurisdictions beyond the capital market.

The Chief Executive Officer of IST, Mr Siaka Idoko-Akoh, made the call at the opening of the tribunal’s 2019/2020 legal year in Lagos.

Idoko-Akoh said that it had become necessary to ensure that the relevance of the body was not limited to the capital market.

He said that expansion of IST jurisdictions would engender speedy resolution of disputes in the financial services sector, away from the usual delays inherent in the regular court system with its attendant consequence for economic growth.

According to him, the tribunal’s panel comprises of persons of proven ability and expertise in corporate and capital market matters and experienced in securities and investments laws, practices, operations and procedures.

“We make bold to say that over the years, the tribunal has continued through its long line of well thought out judgments and rulings, to evolve a new and unique jurisprudence in the Nigeria capital market.

“It has become necessary however, to ensure that the relevance of the IST is not limited to the capital market alone.

“Leveraging on the IST success story, the idea has been mooted in some quarters of the need to enlarge the jurisdiction of the IST to encompass adjudication of disputes arising from dealings or transactions in the financial services sector of the Nigerian economy,” he said.

Idoko-Akoh added that over 70 judgements had been delivered in keenly contested cases across the zones within the statutorily prescribed time of three months from the date of commencement of hearing.

“This is exclusive of cases either struck out, withdrawn or resolved through our court settlement process, while about 24 cases are on-going,” he stated.

Responding, the Deputy Chairman of the House of Representatives Capital Market Committee, Mr Anayo Edwin, said that upon the inauguration of the committee by the speaker, the committee would consider the tribunal’s request.

“Arising from the chairman’s address, let me say that upon the inauguration of this committee by the honourable speaker, we shall consider your request for the expansion of the tribunal’s jurisdiction to cover other financial sector related cases and for other purposes”, Edwin said.

He, however, urged the tribunal to achieve sustainable growth of the financial sector through a harmonious and investment friendly capital market.

 

 

 

Economy

FG Threatens To Open Borders for Cement Importation Over Price Hike

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Palpable fear has gripped cement manufacturers following the Federal Government’s threat to throw open the nation’s borders for cement importation if the product manufacturers fail to bring down the cost.

The Minister of Housing and Urban Development, Mr Ahmed Dangiwa issued the threat on Tuesday in Abuja at a meeting with Cement and Building Materials Manufacturers.

The meeting was summoned to address the astronomical increase in the cost of cement nationwide.

The minister expressed concerns that in the past couple of months, the country had witnessed a recurring alarming increase in the prices of cement and other building materials.

“Clearly, this is a crisis for housing delivery. An increase in essential building materials means an increase in the prices of houses.

“We are not the only country facing this challenges, many countries are facing the same type of challenges that we’re facing, some even worse than that.

“But, as patriotic citizens, we have to rally round the country when there is crisis, to ensure that we do our best to save the situation,” he said.

The minister added: “Honestly speaking, we have to sit down and look at this critically and know how you should go back and think of it.

“The government stopped importation of cement in other to empower you to produce more and sell cheaper

Bags of cement

“Otherwise the government can open the borders for mass importation of cement, the price will crash, but you will have no business to do”.

Dangiwa said the reasons given by cement manufacturers for the price increase – high cost of gas and manufacturing equipment – were not enough for such astronomical pricing.

He expressed his displeasure at the position of  Cement Manufacturer Association of Nigeria (CEMAN) that the association “does not interfer with the pricing of cement”.

He said the association should not just fold  its arms when things were going wrong.

“One person cannot be selling at N3500 per bag and another selling at N7000 per bag and you cannot call them to order.

“The association is expected to monitor price control, otherwise the association has no need to exist,” he said.

Earlier, Mr Salako James, Executive Secretary, CEMAN, said the housing policy of the administration of President Bola  Tinubu was laudable and every responsible Nigerian has to key into it.

He, however, identified some areas of concern and appealed to the government to look into them to tackle the issue of cement pricing.

Salako identified the challenges of gas supply to heavy users like the cement industry and urged the government to create a window whereby gas will be bought with Naira instead of dollar.

He also complained about the distribution channel, stressing tha there was a great difference between the price from the manufacturers and the market price.

He, therefore called for government intervention to help stabilise the situation and bring sanity to the economy.

At the end of the meeting, the minister directed that a committee should be constituted to review the situation and come out with implementable resolutions that would benefit the common Nigerian.

The three major cement producers, Dangote Plc, BUA Plc, and Lafarge Plc were represented as well as other industry stakeholders.

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Economy

Cement Price Can Be Lower Than FG, Manufacturers’ Projection — Association 

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…Warns that high price could lead to corner-cutting and building collapse

The National Association of Block Moulders of Nigeria (NABMON) says the agreement between the Federal Government and three major cement manufacturers that a 50kg bag of cement, for now, is not supposed to sell for more than N7,000 to N8,000 is faulty.

The National President, Mr Adesegun Banjoko, said this on Tuesday in Lagos.

Recall that the parties, at a meeting on Monday, said that the ideal price of  a 50kg bag of cement for now should be between ₦7,000.00 and ₦8,000.00 depending on location.

They agreed that the current higher prices of cement in parts of the country were abnormal.

The main manufacturers of cement in the country are Dangote Plc, BUA Plc and Lafarge Plc.

According to Banjoko, there is no reason for the price of cement to be sold even at the projected prices, since limestone, which is a key ingredient, is readily available in Nigeria.

He expressed fears that the high price would lead to corner-cutting and building collapse.

The NABMON president expressed the belief that the government and manufacturers could do better and offer lower prices.

Bags of cements

He suggested a reduction or elimination of customs duties on other imported materials used in cement production, adding that this would incentivise manufacturers to lower their prices.

He, therefore, proposed a target price of ₦3,500 to ₦5,000 per bag.

Banjoko said, “There are three issues that make me disagree with the government and the main manufacturers.

“First, limestone is sourced in Nigeria; agreed they have some few other materials they bring in from abroad.

“But if the government is really concerned about life and property lost to building collapse, they should either remove custom duties on such items or reduce them by half to encourage the manufacturers to come down to between N3, 500 and N5, 000.”

He also advised the government to temporarily halt road construction projects that use cement.

Banjoko said that this would free up available cement for vital projects and potentially reduce demand, leading to lower prices.

The NABMON president warned that the high price of cement had added to the existing tensions in the country.

He urged the government to act cautiously with essential commodities like cement, emphasising its impact on public well-being.

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Economy

NGX: Bullish Sentiment Persists, Investors Gain N329bn

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Stock Market Gains N18bn; FTN Cocoa Processors, Prestige Assurance lead Losers’ Chart 

…Unilever Nigeria Plc, Julius Berger lead Losers’ table 

Bullish sentiment persisted on Thursday at the Nigerian Exchange Ltd. (NGX) equity market, as the market indices rose by 0.58 percent.

Specifically, investors gained N329 billion or 0.58 percent, as the market capitalisation closed at N56.961 trillion, as against N56.632 trillion recorded on Wednesday.

The All-Share Index also appreciated by 0.58 percent or 601.72 points to settle at 104,100, compared to 103,498.28 posted in the previous session.

As a result, the Year-To-Date (YTD) return rose to 39.22 percent.

Continuous buy interests in the shares of BUA Cement, BUAFoods, and Geregu kept the market in the positive terrain.

A total of 284.49 million shares valued at N6.91 billion were exchanged in 8,168 deals, as against 426.86 million shares valued at N12.11 billion exchanged in 8,654 deals.

However, analysis of the market activities showed trade turnover settled lower relative to the previous session, with the value of transactions down by 42.89 percent.

Guaranty Trust Holding Company(GTCO) led the activity table in volume and value with the trade of 56.61 million shares worth N2.22 billion.

Transcorp followed with 33.17 million shares valued at N418.31 million, while United Bank of Africa(UBA) traded 18.38 million shares worth N442.96 million.

Also, Mutual Benefits Assurance sold 16.76 shares valued at N11.48 million and AXA Mansard traded 12.51 million shares worth N75.57 million.

On the gainers’ table, University Press Ltd.(UPL) led in percentage terms of 9.96 percent to close at N2.87, followed by Juli Plc by 9.84 percent to close at N1.34 per share.

Mutual Benefits gained 9.38 percent to close at 70k, Daar Communications rose by 8.82 percent to close at 74k, while Honeywell Flour garnered 7.50 percent to close at N4.30 per share.

Stock Market Gains N18bn; FTN Cocoa Processors, Prestige Assurance lead Losers’ Chart 

Conversely, Unilever Nigeria Plc led the losers’ table by 9.80 percent to close at N16.10, Julius Berger lost 9.64 percent to close at N50.60, while Morison Industries Plc shed 9.60 percent to close at N2.23 per share.

May & Baker Nigeria Plc depreciated by 6.52 percent to close at N6.45 and National Salt Company of Nigeria (NASCON) dropped 5.37 percent to close at N59.04 per share.

Market breadth closed negative with 26 declining stocks outnumbering 23 advancing ones.

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