Friday, July 17, 2009

Shaking up the Nairobi Investment Scene

Knocking Off Rogue Brokers

The Kenya Capital Markets Authority (CMA) has published new regulations that could knock off customer confidence in any small stockbroker still standing at the Nairobi Stock Exchange (NSE) as they have now become law.

Changes include:
- Sets minimum share capital for stockbrokers at Kshs. 50 million (~$650,000) and investment banks at 250 million (~$3.25 million) some stockbroker are investment banks in name only name
- Agents may work for one stockbroker only and may not handles client cash
- They must use International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS)for reporting
- They must publish audited accounts and ½ year un-audited accounts in newspapers and also dispaly the same in their branches so by August 09 we should get a clearer picture of who's up or down
- They must obtain indemnity insurance
- They are to notify the CMA before appointment of executives, directors, and auditors as well as prior to branch openings/closing

Some of the proposal also affects investment funds, fund managers, and pension schemes. They were first proposed two months ago for public review and borrow a bit form existing central banks laws and are much harsher than when first formulated.

Other losers retail investors who lost their money in collapsed brokers (Nyaga, Discount, Francis Thuo etc.), it limits their potential compensation to just 50,000 shillings ($~650)

Winners - newspapers who will see an increase in quarterly advertisements from stockbrokers, investment banks, investment funds, fund managers, and pensions schemes.
- insurance companies (Stockbrokers and investment banks are to obtain professional indemnity insurance worth 5 times their daily average turnover)


Ryan Shen-Hoover said...

Were there any minimum capital requirements for brokers and investment banks previously?

ke said...


Isn't the main problem here one of law enforcement? Because the CMA can institute all the rules they want. However, if the AG or other law enforcement agencies refuse to prosecute and jail white collar crimes, what is really going to change?

Brokers like Nyagah & Francis Thuo should have been investigated & possibly prosecuted. Then, fined & maybe even jailed for stealing people's money.

Until there is a recognition in the entire country that white collar crimes are just as damaging as other crimes, I don't think anything is really going to change.

You have to catch a guy like Madoff and send him to jail for 150 years in order to send a message to other people who might be thinking of doing this.

It's the only way to reduce corruption and it's the only way to temper the intrinsic greed that exists within all of us.

chegepreneur said...

I have been wondering whether my Stock brocker is an investment bank/stock broker. Sometimes they call themselves Sterling Investment Bank while sometimes they are referred to as sterling securities Ltd. Now we shall know.
I totally agree with Kenyanentrepreneur. The proprietors of Nyagah & Francis Thuo should not be left alone to be playing golf with the high & mighty of the society as if nothing happened. They should be in Kamiti or langata with the other inmates.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for good posts as always. A little off-topic but does anyone know how I can get a subscription of "Institutional Investor" magazine in Kenya?

indavao said...

hi... just dropping by!

MainaT said...

The rules have been in the public domain for years and would have saved us from the likes of Nyaga and FT if they had been introduced in '06 when they were first muted.

Anyway, its all about implementation. See Olympia Capital and ponder...

Anonymous said...

White collar criminals on trial or convicted in last few years... er... John Faustin Kinyua, Terry Davidson, Chris Kirubi, Isaac Awuondo (12 others), Johnson Githaka, Patrick Gacivih, Davy Koech, Charles Kandie, Ongonga Achieng, Dr Mohammed Isahakia, Dr Margaret Gachara, Mr Nathaniel Tum... No 150 years sentences -- Kinyua gor a Sh4m fine -- but this is more progress than ever before.

bankelele said...

Ryan Shen-Hoover : I believe they were about 30 and 50 million shillings

KE: true enforcement is a weak point though the CMA has been much more forceful about this than in recent years but also read Kenya capital investment group latest post where stockbrokers still dictate regulations in Kenya and the US (

Chegepreneur: the different has been confusing to many,

Anon: there is an east Africa exchange magazine (

MainaT: CMA chief seems more willing to use her powers

Anon: more white collar prosecutions yes, but under-paid over-worked prosecutors are likely to lose to well-paid slick big lawyers

Anonymous said...

CBK updated their website ( with a more informative home page (vital statistics & percentages on the right pane!!)


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