Director-General and Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Dr. Nii Sowa, has called for the integration of African stock exchanges to increase liquidity in the markets and make them more attractive to investors. Sowa also stressed the need for investor education as a way of restoring confidence back to the African capital markets.
Speaking on the floor of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) in Lagos yesterday, he said that one of the major problems retarding the growth of stock markets in Africa is low financial literacy.
According to him, the losses recorded in African stock markets were partly caused by illiteracy on the part of investors, saying that investors education will go a long way to help the markets to bounce back.He said, “Integration of stock exchanges will help increase liquidity and create more transparency in our market as well as increase the growth and eradicate the factor of illiteracy which has hindered the expected development of the African market over the years.”
In her speech, the Director General of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), Prof Ndi Okereke-Onyiuke, said progress has been made for the full integration of the West Africa market with signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) at the last African Stock Exchanges Association (ASEA), conference held in Abuja between Nigeria , Ghana and other francophone Stock Exchanges.
She explained that the integration is aimed at harmonising operations and trading practices among exchanges in the West African sub-region. According to her, the framework for the integration of the regional exchanges will be worked out soon.Meanwhile, investors staked N3.114 billion on 364.388 million shares in 7,541 deals at the stock market, up from N2.925 billion invested in 332 million shares in 6,649 deals the previous day.
However, the NSE All-Share Index and market capitalisation closed lower as the bears remained in control of the market. The index fell from 23,003.57 to close at 22,931.43, while equities capitalisation declined from N5.540 trillion to N5.523 trillion.African Petroleum Plc led the price losers with N1.55 to close at N39.70 per share. UACN Property Development Company Plc trailed with a loss of N0.50 to close at N20.50, while Benue Cement Company Plc shed N0.48 to close at N50.02 per share.
UAC of Nigeria Plc, Guaranty Trust Bank Plc, University Press Plc, Presco Plc, Zenith Bank Plc and Access Bank Plc shed N0.41, N0.34, N0.30, N0.28; N0.21 and N0.16 respectively.On the other hand, Cadbury Nigeria Plc led the price gainers with N0.75 to close at N16 per share. PZ Cussons Nigeria Plc trailed with gain of N0.70, just as National Salt Company of Nigeria Plc and Costain (W.A) Plc chalked up N0.27 and N0.25 in that order.