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Capital market operator tasks FG on forex policy




A finance expert, Mr Sola Oni, on Monday told urged the Federal Government to pursue a flexible foreign exchange policy to reduce uncertainties at the foreign exchange market.

Oni, who is a Stockbroker and Chief Executive Officer of SOFUNIX Investment and Communications Ltd., told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos that a more flexible approach would boost investors’ confidence.

According to Oni, there is urgent need for change of stance because many economic sectors are battling for survival at the moment.
“For instance, the financial market, especially the NSE, which was forward looking now send signals of a weak economy through its statistics daily.

The shock from the international oil market and the failure by the previous administration to save from the high price of crude oil in the past has put us in a quandary.”

He explained that negative growth of the Gross Domestic Product in the first quarter, high inflation rate and other parameters called for quick a review of the forex policy.

He said that President Muhammadu Buhari in the last one year had embarked on fighting corruption in high places.
“This is a good beginning as most of our current challenges are rooted in corruption with impunity.

“The trend will lead to an attitudinal change and the complexity of the laws in Nigeria should not delay government’s access to the recovered loots for economic development,” Oni stated.

But Mr Adebayo Adeleke, National Secretary of the Independent Shareholders Association of Nigeria (ISAN), said the current situation was complicated by a lack of definite economic policy immediately after the general elections.

Adeleke said, however, that the market had started showing signs of improvement since the passage of the budget, coupled with government’s determination to pursue some capital projects this year.

According to him, these measures will surely re-flate the economy and impact on the capital market.Adeleke advised that the present administration should focus on the implementation of the budget to rejuvenate economic activities.

NAN reports that the NSE All-Share Index last week rose by 675.42 points or 2.55 per cent to close at 27,116.45.Also, the market capitalisation, which opened at N9.099 trillion inched by N214 billion to close at N9.313 trillion.

An analysis of the week’s price movement chart showed that United Bank for Africa led the gainers’ table in percentage terms by 22.59 per cent or 82k to close at N4.45 per share.

Conoil followed by 20.67 per cent or N3.94 to close at N23, while Oando appreciated by 13.42 per cent or 71k to close at N6 per share.
Conversely, Vitafoam topped the losers’ table in percentage terms, shedding 20.85 per cent or N1.13 to close at N4.29 per share.

Tiger Brand trailed with a loss of 19.87 per cent or N1.19 to close at N4.80, while NCR declined by 14.14 per cent or N1.48 to close at N8.99 per share.

A turnover of 2.45 billion shares worth N13.15 billion were exchanged by investors in 23,680 deals as against 1.83 billion shares valued at N14.47 billion traded in 20,058 deals in the corresponding week.

The Financial Services Industry led the activity chart in volume terms with a total of 2.01 billion shares worth N9.49 billion traded in 14,200 deals.

The Conglomerates sector followed with 208.48 million shares valued at N268.05 million transacted in 1,134 deals.
The third place was occupied by the Oil and Gas Industry with a turnover of 80.27 million shares worth N692.61 million achieved in 2,826 deals.

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