NPRA urged to allow 50% pension funds to be invested in listed companies

The National Pensions Regulatory Authority (NPRA), should increase to 50 per cent the amount of the pension funds that it permits to be invested in shares of listed companies, the Managing Director of the Ghana Stock Exchange (GSE), Mr Kofi S. Yamoah has suggested.

Currently, the NPRA allows only up to 20 per cent of pensions funds to be invested in shares of listed companies.

Mr Yamoah, who made the suggestion in Accra during a news conference to present the review of the half year performance of the Stock Market, said the move had become necessary to provide long term funds for government and companies in the country to finance their operations.

He opined that the government and private companies needed long term funds to finance their operations, saying countries which had seen massive development achieved that on the back of long term finance.

He also disclosed that the GSE was currently reviewing the Exchange’s Rule book on trading, surveillance, listing, membership among others.

Mr Yamoah said his outfit had completed and operationalised the E-Bond Trading Platform, a system with the depository system of the Central Security Depository to facilitate straight through processing of E-Bond transactions.

The Managing Director of the GSE mentioned the low numberlisted on the Accra bourse, low liquidity in the secondary market and lack of macro incentives for attracting issuers as some of the challenges facing the GSE.

He said the GSE in the coming months would embark on advocacy and education to attract more companies onto the bourse.

On the outlook for the Accra bourse for the second half of 2018, Mr Yamoah said the GSE would facilitate ongoing public offer and bank recapitalisation as well as initial public offers and right issues.

He said the rights issue of the Republic Bank Ghana Limited and Societe Generale Ghana Limited were ongoing and Energy Commercial Bank was seeking regulatory approval for its initial public offer.

“The GSE in the second half of the year will sustain and improve market efficiency with regard to GSE systems and infrastructure, market confidence and liquidity,” Mr Yamoah said, adding that GSE would continue to build the capacity of market professional through continuous professional development workshops and participation in capital market conference and study tours.

By Kingsley Asare & Grace Baah

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