Nigeria’s Stock Market Now World’s Worst

at 12:07 AM, 2/04/2009 (9 years ago)
(4104 | Gistmaniac) (m)
Nigeria’s stock market, Africa’s best performer during the past decade, posted the biggest declines worldwide in the first quarter, as bad loans to speculators pushed bank valuations to an all-time low, an analysis by Bloomberg showed today.

The Nigeria Stock Exchange All Share Index fell 37 per cent this year, the steepest quarterly decline in more than a decade and the worst of 89 benchmark indices tracked by Bloomberg. Nigerian stocks reached a five- year low last week, even as a rebound in crude spurred gains in commodity-exporting countries from Russia and Norway to Brazil. Investors have been fleeing “the good, the bad and the ugly” of the financial industry since Nigerian regulators allowed banks to delay booking losses on so-called margin loans backed by shares, emerging-markets brokerage, Renaissance Capital says.

The lack of disclosure left investors unable to identify potential losses. The All Share Index may fall another 9 per cent, according to Moscow-based Renaissance and London-based Exotix Holdings Ltd. “Without meaningful disclosure investors will be hesitant to come back, especially in the financials,” said Christopher Hartland-Peel, an equity analyst at Exotix. “No one can really tell how the companies are faring.”



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