ZSE to publish handbook on listed firms

THE Zimbabwe Stock Exchange (ZSE) says it is planning to publish a handbook profiling the over 50 listed companies on the main bourse to encourage more investment on the platform.

BY TATIRA ZWINOIRA

Since the reintroduction of the Zimbabwe dollar (ZWL) in June 2019, trading on the main bourse has become highly volatile as many companies have had to reposition their balance books, resulting in billion dollar losses.

“The Zimbabwe Stock Exchange Limited (ZSE) will be publishing the 2019 ZSE handbook that will profile all the ZSE-listed companies, ZSE participants, capital market players and also have summary market statistics for the year 2019. The publication is expected to be published by 16 April 2020,” ZSE said in a statement.

“The handbook will be distributed to the business fraternity, local and foreign investors and it will be A5 in size. The handbook gives market players, stockbrokers and issuers the opportunity to communicate their product/service offerings to the market, allowing you to speak directly to potential or current local and foreign investors.”

Considering that the Zimbabwe dollar continues to devalue, the main bourse has sought to stop the bleeding through several measures to bolster trading on the ZSE.

These include a recently signed memorandum of understanding (MoU) agreement to operationalise the Zimbabwe Emerging Enterprise Market, establish a receivables financing platform as well as make changes to the listing requirements.
The ZSE has also signed an MoU with the Botswana Stock Exchange to provide the two exchanges with a framework for cooperation in the areas of product and market development and the promotion of cross listings, among other objectives.

This comes as, in real value terms, the total market capitalisation of the ZSE is worth US$1,8 billion, a massive drop from the US$20 billion valuation at the end of 2018.

Imara Asset Management (Zimbabwe) Limited chief executive John Legat in an investment note , dated January 16, 2020, he said the devaluation of the Zimbabwe dollar was making the capital markets unattractive.

“The effects of the decline in the value of the ZWL upon Zimbabwe’s banking, insurance and pensions sectors have been devastating in real USD terms,” Legat said.

“In short, the local capital markets will find it hard to fund any meaningful investments as we start the next decade, implying that only foreign capital has that ability. Sadly foreign investors are no longer much interested in Zimbabwe although they continue to keep a close eye on events should the investment climate change.”
He added most of the prescribed assets on the market are debt orientated and denominated in ZWL.

“In the event of the demise in the ZWL at any point, these assets would cease to exist — and become valueless – as occurred in 2009,” Legat said.