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Zimbabwe: C-Trade Buoys ZSE

zimbabwe c trade buoys zse

The launch of C-Trade has significantly improved participation of small retail investors on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange (ZSE) accounting for more than 50 percent of volumes in the first half of 2021.

Zimbabwe launched the C-Trade — an automated trading platform in 2018, which effectively opened capital markets to all and enhanced financial inclusion.

Escrow Systems, a subsidiary of Escrow Group provided the technology that also enables mobile and online share trading, becoming a first of its kind in Sub Saharan Africa region. Although values still remain low, C-Trade has been a significant volume pusher on the bourse and the trend is continuing in the second half of the year.

For instance, on July 27, C-Trade accounted for 69 percent of the total trades recorded on the ZSE, which was a new record for retail participation. Of the 651 trades recorded, retail participation via the mobile application accounted for 449.

Financial Securities Exchange Limited (FINSEC) general manager Garikayi Munema, said as operators of exchanges, there were more opportunities available to ride on technology to attract more retail participation and make capital markets a preferred investment destination for Zimbabweans. Finsec is Escrow Group’s subsidiary.

“People have not been participating on equities market, which is why we brought C-Trade which allows anyone to trade from anywhere using their mobile devices.

“Since its launch, we have seen an impressive improvement in retail participation, although the values are still low, it is encouraging to see retail investors using C-Trade account for more than half the trades on the ZSE,” said Mr Munema.

Prior to the launch of C-Trade, it is estimated that only around 7 000 individuals were active on the local stock markets. Institutional investors dominated trades on the bourse. But through the initiative, small retail investors, right up to the largest institutions can have direct access to the equities markets.

Mr Munema said prospects were high for the platform with plans to widen product range, while further increasing retail participation.

“Our intention is to keep the platform growing by extending products and connections to other payment platforms such as ZIPIT so that we can have more people transact more values.

“We want to see shares, exchange traded funds (ETFs), derivatives on the C-Trade app, to increase participation. We want to ride on technology which is convenient and enhances efficiencies of capital markets so that we lure more retail participation and boost financial inclusion,” he said adding more products such as derivatives were in the pipeline.

Mr Munema said they were looking at futures and optional derivatives targeting both retail and institutional investors.

Derivatives are financial instruments created and derive their value from an underlying assets such as gold or a group of assets. The most common underlying assets for derivatives are stocks, bonds, commodities, currencies, interest rates and market indexes.

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Zimbabwe: Guchu Lands ZSE Chief Finance Officer Position

zimbabwe guchu lands zse chief finance officer position
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Seasoned accountant, Prisca Guchu has been appointed chief finance officer at the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange (ZSE).

The appointment is with effect from August 11 2021.

Holder of a Master’s in Business Administration (MBA) from the prestigious University Of Bradford School Of Management, Guchu has a long professional history underpinned by a traceable record of integrity which began with Deloitte (Zimbabwe) where she trained and qualified as a Chartered Accountant.

She is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Zimbabwe (ICAZ).

Apart from the MBA she holds an Honours Bachelor of Accounting Science degree from the University of South Africa (UNISA) and a Bachelor of Commerce Honours degree in Accounting from the National University of Science and Technology (NUST).

Prior to joining the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange (ZSE), Prisca held a senior position in a capital market organisation and accumulated over eight years’ experience.

During her tenure, she played a key role in the automation of the Zimbabwean capital markets. Previous appointments include a senior role at an insurance group where she spearheaded the establishment of an Internal Audit department.

” The Board of Directors, Management and Staff at ZSE congratulate her in this position and warmly welcome Prisca to the team. We wish her success during her tenure in this new role,” ZSE chief executive officer Justin Bgoni said.

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Zimbabwe: Old Mutual Zimbabwe Awards 2021’s Top Companies

zimbabwe old mutual zimbabwe awards 2021s top companies

Twelve companies received awards at the annual Top Company Survey awards, held virtually last week. The prestigious awards, powered by Old Mutual Zimbabwe, defied all odds following the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic. The awards ran under the theme “From surviving to thriving: reimagining business after the pandemic”, as Zimbabwe’s companies are shifting to reach new heights despite the unpredictable environment. The awards celebrated companies that have elected not only to survive, but to seize current adverse conditions to reshape mindsets and behaviours, embracing the opportunity to innovate fresh solutions and make bold bets that spur growth.

The Top Company Survey recognises companies that are listed on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange, as well as in the banking and insurance sectors. The survey considers a range of quantitative and qualitative aspects in order to determine and award the winning companies. In 2020, an entirely new evaluation model was created, that is adjusted in line with the hyperinflationary environment. The model was put to the test this year, and it demonstrated its resilience, robustness and functionality. Additionally, the insurance sector and banking sector models were adjusted in order to increase their relevance to the operating environment, enhance quality and increase objectivity of results.

Samuel Matsekete, Group CEO of Old Mutual Zimbabwe reinforced the significance of the theme and the impact of Covid-19 on the business environment. “We all appreciate the difficulties and abnormalities that have been created by Covid-19. We are in a third wave, which has brought with it new vicissitudes and created uncertainties in the markets,” he said.

Referring to the adage “nothing is constant except change”, Mr Matsekete said that threats to the endeavours of businesses are more real and more pronounced under the conditions such as those induced by Covid-19. More and more, businesses need to make increasingly difficult decisions faster, under conditions that are extremely volatile, uncertain, and often with less information. “Change is a constant and we cannot escape it. In a way, crises are adrenaline for innovation. Present and future times demand that our mindset truly embraces fast change so that these constraints feed the creativity in us. Necessity and urgency unleash in us the ideas and innovations to dissipate inertia and to spur us on,” said Mr Matsekete.

By solving challenges, striving to make lives easier, and working to make communities look and live better, businesses create value. Old Mutual believes that the value created from doing business needs to benefit wider communities, as well as customers, shareholders and other stakeholders. When business entities invite the public to participate in value creating activities, that fosters wider and inclusive economic growth. By listing on an exchange, a business exhibits even more transparently what it has to offer for the benefit of wider communities and stakeholder groups. As Old Mutual navigated through the Covid-19 pandemic, the business learned that agility is key to success. It allows the business to quickly respond to the sudden and constant changes in their customers’ needs- as they also respond to the changes in our environment. Agility defines who falls and who survives in troubled waters.

Lillian Mubayiwa, Old Mutual Zimbabwe’s Group Marketing and Innovation Executive, shared Old Mutual’s responsible business mindset, which underpins its operations even in turbulent times. “As a responsible business, Old Mutual believes that crisis begets opportunity. The company will continue to put its best foot forward, to be creative and to find novel solutions to customers’ problems. We will continue to reimagine the way we run our business, to deliver in-person experiences online and engage the customers in new ways,” she said. “We have committed to do great things always, by maintaining the forward momentum to partner with institutions that share the same philosophy.” While this year’s awards celebrated governance, profitability and corporate social initiatives, the occasion also marked the solid and enduring relationship between Old Mutual and the Financial Gazette, as the Top Companies Survey has been running for 41 years. “Our collaboration with the Financial Gazette on the Top Companies Awards is testament to our support of customers, who have continued to achieve greatness in the face of Covid-19,” Lillian Mubayiwa said.

An efficient and reputable stock exchange is anchored by companies that create real value. Old Mutual has committed to continue to play its role to support efficient and transparent financial intermediation. The company’s products and services continue to adapt, to respond to the voice of the customer, and are designed to support the development of the wider economy. Old Mutual congratulates all the winners of the Top Companies Survey 2021, as well as all companies who have continued to innovate and grow in these trying times.

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Nigeria: Stock Market Maintains Positive Trend, Appreciates By N480.8 Billion in Three Days

nigeria stock market maintains positive trend appreciates by n480 8 billion in three days

The Nigerian equities market sustained its positive trend yesterday amid price appreciation in large-mid capitalised stocks extending gains to three days

The stock prices appreciation in the likes of GTCO Plc, Dangote Cement Plc, among others impacted on the Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX) market capitalisation, gaining N480.8 billion in three days.

At the close of business, the market capitalisation went up by N21.67billion to close at N20.575trillion as against N20.553 trillion it opened for trading.

THISDAY had report that the stock market on Wednesday appreciated by N317.5billion and it also gained N141.6 billion on Tuesday.

The N21.67 billion gained in yesterday’s trading was buoyed by investors’ buy-sentiment in GTCO, Zenith Bank Plc and Dangote cement.

Consequently, the NGX All Share Index (ASI) gained 0.11 per cent yesterday to close at 39,490.06 basis points from 39,448.46 basis points the previous day.

The stock market upturn brings its performance in Month-to-Date increased to 2.5 per cent, while Year-to-Date loss moderated to -1.9per cent.

On sectors, the Insurance (-1.8 per cent), Banking (-0.2 per cent) and Oil & Gas (-0.2 per cent) indices recorded declines, the Industrial Goods (+0.4 per cent) index gained, while the Consumer goods index closed flat.

As measured by market breadth, market sentiment was positive, as eight stocks gained, relative to 24 losers.

Honey well Flour Mills plc recorded the highest price gain of 10per cent, to close at N1.87 per share.

Wema bank plc followed with a gain 3.95 per cent to close at N0.79, while Flour Mills gained 3.96 per cent to close at N2.29, per share.

AIICO Insurance appreciated by 2.11 per cent to close at N0.97, while GTCO appreciated by 1.07 per cent to close at N28.40 kobo, per share.

Tripple G top the losers table to close at 0.88 after shedding 9.28

Regal Insurance was also down by 8.51 per cent to close at 0.43 kobo, while Prestige Assurance lost 8.33per cent to close at 0.44, per share.

Japaul gold shed 7.48 per cent to close at 0.47 kobo, while NEM Insurance depreciated by 6.34 per cent to close at 1.92 kobo, respectively.

The market turnover closes positive as volume moved up by 214.30per cent as against 61.77per cent downtick recorded in the previous session.

Honey flour mills was the most actively traded stock with about 384million units of shares worth about N654million.

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Zimbabwe: Tongaat Records 31 Percent Sales Increase

zimbabwe tongaat records 31 percent sales increase

ZIMBABWE Stock Exchange (ZSE) listed agro-industry giant, Tongaat Hullets (TH), has reported a healthy 31% surge in sugar sales this year, crediting the increase to current economic policies which it says have helped ease inflationary pressure while improving the exchange rate stability.

Since last year, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ) has been undertaking a raft of measures which include the mopping up of excess liquidity and introduction of the Foreign Exchange Auction system among other measures.

These have resulted in relatively slowing down inflation and improving trade among other notable improvements.

Presenting the trading update for the first quarter ended June 30 2021, THZ chairman, Canaan Dube said the period under review was characterised by positive economic indicators.

“Annual inflation continued on a downward trajectory to 107% by 30 June 2021. The Zimbabwe dollar exchange rate has been relatively stable and industry continued to transact in multi-currencies on the local market, ensuring improved foreign currency liquidity within the formal economy. Total industry sugar sales into the domestic market for the quarter at 86 843 tons were 31% above the same period prior year,” Dube said

He attributed the performance to a combination of strong demand and the non-repeat of supply containment measures implemented in prior year to curb then existing speculative trading on account of price distortions.

“Price realisations in both local and foreign currency on the local market remained ‑firm in current purchasing power terms,” said Dube.

The remarks coincided with total foreign exchange auction allotments reaching US$44 million this week.

Demand for foreign currency rose with a total 1 092 bids being submitted up from around 600 bids which were submitted for most part of the year’s first half.

Raw materials, machinery and equipment needs were allotted US$14 million and US$7,9 million respectively on the main auction platform.

The two priorities were also allotted US$2, 3 million and US$2,5 million on the Small to Medium Enterprises auction platform.

The SMEs platform received US$10, 7 million while the Main Auction received US$33,3 million.

Meanwhile, during the first quarter, THZ delivered 7 000 tons of maize to the Grain Marketing Board (GMB), significantly improving food security in the region.

In addition, 1 216 tons of seed maize was produced in partnership with the country’s major seed house, SeedCo while a total of 700 hectares are currently under winter wheat and sugar beans.

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Nigeria: Agency Issues 21-Day Eviction Notice to Markets in Kaduna

nigeria agency issues 21 day eviction notice to markets in kaduna
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The Kaduna State Urban Planning and Development Authority (KASUPDA) says a new ultra-modern pharmaceutical market will be built in the area.

The Kaduna State Urban Planning and Development Authority (KASUPDA) has issued a 21-day eviction notice to occupants of some markets in Kaduna metropolis.

In a statement on Wednesday, the spokesperson of the agency, Nuhu Garba, said the area was being used for a purpose contrary to the title given for it.

He said an ultra modern pharmaceutical market would be established in the place.

“The construction of a new ultra-modern pharmaceutical market at the area is in line with the State Government’s Urban Renewal, Urban Reformation and City Beautification Initiatives,” he said.

The agency advised the affected persons operating businesses in the area, who had been issued eviction notice, to comply with the directive.

KASUPDA further said that the provision of a pharmaceutical market in the area was not meant to displease anybody, but for development and future generation.

It pledged to work for the well-being of residents, and therefore solicited for their co-operation and understanding. (NAN)

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Nigeria: Stock Market Maintains Positive Trend, Appreciates By N459.12 Billion in Two Days

nigeria stock market maintains positive trend appreciates by n459 12 billion in two days

Transactions on the Nigerian equities market yesterday closed on a positive note to maintain the previous day’s bullish sentiment, as investors investment soar by N459.12 billion in two days.

The stock market in the previous day appreciated by N317.5billion and yesterday it also gained N141.6 billion.

Yesterday’s trading upturn was buoyed by investors’ buy-sentiment in some blue-chip stocks like Airtel Africa, GTCO, Zenith Bank Plc and Oando Plc.

Consequently, the Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX) All Share Index (ASI) increased by 271.84 basis points, representing a growth of 0.69 per cent to close at 39,448.46 basis points from 39,176.62 basis points.

Similarly, the market capitalisation gained N141.6 billion to close at N20.553 trillion from N20.412trillion.

In addition to the two days appreciation, stock market performance Month-to-Date increased to +2.3per cent, while the Year-to-Date loss moderated to -two per cent.

Analysing by sectors, the Banking (+0.5per cent) and Oil and gas (+0.1 per cent) indices recorded gains, while the Insurance, Industrial Goods, and Consumer Goods indices closed flat.

As measured by market breadth, market sentiment was positive, as 20 stocks gained, relative to 15 losers. Pharma Deko recorded the highest price gain of 9.17 per cent, to close at N1.19, per share. Neimeth International Pharmaceuticals followed with a gain 8.61 per cent to close at N1.64, while Ikeja Hotel appreciated by 7.69 per cent to close at N1.40, per share.

Livestock Feeds went up by 6.84 per cent to close at N2.03, while Linkage Assurance appreciated by 6.78 per cent to close at 63 kobo, per share. On the other hand, FTN Cocoa Processors led the losers’ chart by 8.89 per cent to close at 41 kobo, per share. Wema Ban followed with a decline of 7.32 per cent to close at 76 kobo, while May and Baker Nigeria lost 6.38 per cent to close at N4.40, per share.

Mutual Benefits Assurance shed 5.56 per cent to close at 34 kobo, while Veritas Kapital Assurance depreciated by 4.17 per cent to close at 23 kobo, respectively.

The total volume of trades declined by 61.8 per cent to 181.42 million units, valued at N2.08 billion, and exchanged in 3,599 deals.

Transactions in the shares of Transnational Corporation of Nigeria (Transcorp) topped the activity chart with 20.488 million shares valued at N19.342 million. ETI followed with 17.542 million shares worth N97.995 million, while FCMB Group traded 15.311 million shares valued at N48.209 million.

Sterling Bank traded 14.137 million shares valued at N22.239 million, while United Bank for Africa (UBA) transacted 10.939 million shares worth N83.386 million.

Analysts at Afrinvest Limited said:”We expect the bullish performance to be sustained in the next trading session, as investors continue to trade on company specific fundamentals.”

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South Africa: Outgoing Satrix CEO Helena Conradie Talks Shares, Funds and Financial Inclusion

south africa outgoing satrix ceo helena conradie talks shares funds and financial inclusion
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It wasn’t that long ago that investing in stocks listed on the JSE was for wealthier people, people who by virtue of their education or passed-down knowledge knew how the system worked. You needed a stockbroker and a minimum investment of at least a thousand rand or two.

First published in the Daily Maverick 168 weekly newspaper.

How things have changed. Today investors have dozens of affordable online stockbroking platforms to choose from, complete with online tutorials. These platforms range from full-service online stockbrokers to funky low-cost options like EasyEquities, where individuals can invest as little as R50 in fractions of shares – both locally and internationally.

My guest at lunch today is Helena Conradie, the outgoing CEO of Satrix, who has witnessed this change first-hand over the past 20-odd years. We are having lunch at the aptly named I Love the Dough, a pizza-house-cum-cocktail-bar located on Bree Street in Cape Town. With its candyfloss pink walls, neon signs and giant dinosaur mural, we suspect that, had the joint been full, we would easily have been the oldest people in it. Except that it wasn’t full. Just five days after restaurants were allowed to reopen and the booze ban lifted,…

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Uganda: Financial Markets, Exchange Rates Likely to Remain Stable

uganda financial markets exchange rates likely to remain stable

What are the key internal factors that have influenced swings or impacted the financial markets in the past two or so months?

In the month of June, we had the reading of the national budget. That was the single most important economic event then and it is usually a big driver of the financial markets. We have also suffered a resurgence of the Covid-19 pandemic, what the health professionals have termed the second wave. The government responded with a very restrictive lockdown to lessen the spread. This has had a significant impact on domestic trade, tourism, and hospitality. These sectors are some of the biggest sources and consumers of foreign exchange and their disruption impacts exchange rates. The other sectors that have struggled are education and the transport sector. The two sectors were driving the recovery earlier this year when schools re-opened. There is also a large knockon consumer demand. Our PMI survey continues to show that output orders have dropped and other leading indicators point to an observable impact on aggregate demand leading to very low inflation. The other event is the decision by the Bank of Uganda’s monetary policy committee to reduce its policy rate to 6.5% at their June meeting. This is now the lowest the benchmark has been since inception in 2011 and we see this loose policy keeping short end rates low.

And the external factors?

In the region, we have seen Tanzania open its financial markets to offshore investors beyond the East African region. But more importantly, the economic situation in the advanced economies is changing, with strong recoveries and higher inflation outlook. This has triggered concerns on whether the central banks will start tightening their monetary policies marking an end to the era of cheap US dollar liquidity all over the world.

Initially, the jump in inflation was considered transitory but we are seeing more Central Banks confirming a more permanent outlook of higher inflation. We are seeing more offshore investors exit their positions in our government securities on the above concerns. This is leading to a reversal of yields.

As an example, the 1-year Treasury bill which had dropped to 9.5% has now bounced back to 10.25%. On the long end,

we can see the 20 Year treasury bond which had dropped to 14.85% is now back up to 15.85%. The question is how much further can these rates go?

Basing on the aforementioned factors, how does the outlook (2022) look like for Uganda’s financial markets?

The current environment is very mixed with counter forces on either side for both interest rates and exchange rates. On the one hand, we have the national treasury seeking more from the domestic market and understandably so as tax revenues have been impacted by the lower economic activity. This should push interest rates higher, but now it is countered by the existence of a large supply of local shilling liquidity.

Banks are seated with tons of cash which they must deploy and with the current lower demand for loans, banks must put this cash into treasury securities. This creates a balance of sentiments with no clear direction in rates but more side-ways movements. In summary, we expect a lot more volatility in rates. For exchange rates, there is a lower demand for US dollars as trade activity (particularly imports) has dropped. This has supported the rally in the exchange rates, and we continue to see the Uganda shilling strengthen significantly against the US dollar. In January, the local currency was under pressure and rates climbed as high as Shs3, 725 per US dollar but they have since recovered to Shs3, 550 just this past week.In our view, this trend will continue, and we could see the Shs3, 450-level trade.

There are some upside risks however, especially events in the advanced economies. If the US Federal Reserve bank, as an example, starts tapering their bond purchases this year, which will point to an onset of tightening in US monetary policy, we could see some out flows of US dollars especially out of the fixed income market. That may reverse the strength of the UGX that we are currently seeing. Nonetheless, we still think the Shs3, 750 level is the worst we would see in such a scenario.

What impact will the forthcoming IPOs involving service/telecom companies likely to create on the Financial Markets in general?

I do not have full details about the IPOs beyond what we have seen in the media spaces, so it is difficult to size up the opportunity that these will present. However, the telecom sector is one of the largest sectors of the economy and it is growing at a much greater pace. The emergence of work-from-home, online schooling, digital interactions and digital transactions, the sector is on an upward growth. As such, I expect the IPOs to attract strong interest from both Ugandans and the offshore investors. Locally, the IPOs should generate strong positive vibe that should permeate into other sectors and lift the economy out of the doom caused by the pandemic. We could also receive tremendous inflows of USD as investors seek to purchase shares, especially if a significant portion of the offering is availed to institutional investors.

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Nigeria: CBN Sets N10bn Capital Base for Credit Guarantee Companies

nigeria cbn sets n10bn capital base for credit guarantee companies

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) yesterday pegged at N10 billion the minimum paid-up capital for the establishment of the proposed Credit Guarantee Companies (CGCs) in the country. This was contained in a circular by the CBN titled, “Exposure Draft of Guidelines for Regulation and Supervision of Credit Guarantee Companies in Nigeria,” dated August 4, 2021, and addressed to banks, other financial institutions and stakeholders.

The apex bank stated that the framework for the CGCs would further provide regulation and basis for the operation of credit guarantee companies. The circular, which was signed by the CBN Director, Financial Policy and Regulations Department, Mr. Ibrahim Tukur, also detailed the permissible and non-permissible activities of the CGCs.

A CGC is an institution licenced by the CBN with the primary objective of providing guarantees to banks and other lending financial institutions against the risk of default by obligors.

In addition to the minimum capital base, a CGC is also required to pay a non-refundable application fee of N100, 000, non-refundable licencing fee of N1 million, and change of name fee of N50, 000.

The bank stated that the introduction of CGCs became inevitable as it sought to improve access to lending for micro, small and medium scale enterprises (MSMEs) operating in the country.

The blueprint also seeks to ultimately reduce credit risk, stimulate lower interest rates on loans, as well as complement other initiatives targeted at stimulating lending to MSMEs.

According to the apex bank, the proposed credit risks guarantee firms are expected to provide third-party credit risk mitigation to lenders through the absorption of a portion of the lender’s losses on the loans made to Nigeria-based MSMEs in case of default.

The CBN further explained that any guarantee issued by a CGC represents a legal commitment to discharge the liability of a borrower in the case of default.

Essentially, the guidelines stipulate the minimum standards for the operations of CGCs that provide credit guarantees to Participating Financial Institutions (PFIs).

While the provisions of the guidelines shall apply to CGCs licenced by the CBN, the PFIs shall comply with same provisions as it relates to their activities, the CBN added.

Nonetheless, a credit guarantee by the CGC may cover up to a maximum of 75 per cent of the default amount, the central bank pointed out.

It added that after the crystallised guarantee had been settled, the PFI and the CGC would be required to take all necessary steps to recover the outstanding sum, adding that the CGC shall be reimbursed to the extent of the recovered sum.

The CBN also stated that the cumulative guarantee liabilities of a CGC shall not exceed 10 times of its shareholders’ fund unimpaired by losses. It stressed that the CGCs shall commence operations with, and maintain at all times, a minimum paid-up capital of N10 billion or such amount as may be prescribed by the CBN from time to time.

The circular stated, among other things, “The capital adequacy ratio of a CGC shall be measured as the percentage of its shareholders’ funds unimpaired by losses to its total risk weighted assets.

“The CBN may require a CGC to maintain additional capital as the CBN considers appropriate in respect of other specific risks.”

However, CBN, among other things, barred the CGCs from provision of guarantee to MSMEs based outside Nigeria. The bank also forbade them from accepting demand, savings and time deposits or any other deposits, including provision of credit to customers.

The guarantee companies were also exempted from the management of pension funds or schemes, foreign exchange, commodity, and equity trading, as well as all forms of trading in derivatives and swaps.

The companies were prevented from collection of third-party cheques and other instruments for clearing through correspondent banks. They are not to purchase, sale, dispose, acquire or lease any real estate for whatever purpose without prior written approval of the CBN.

They were required to provide guarantee for risk assets; render advisory services for financial and business development; Invest surplus funds in government securities; and partake in other investments as may be approved by the CBN.