Zenith Bank emerges NSE’s most capitalized, active stock


Zenith-Bank-hqtrBased on its positive performance for a period of 15 months, Zenith Bank Nigeria Plc has emerged the most active and capitalised stock of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE).Zenith Bank had in February, occupied the third position as the most capitalised stock, trailing behind Nigerian Breweries Plc and First Bank Nigeria Plc.

To achieve the new position, Zenith Bank Plc recorded 20.8 per cent increase in market capitalisation from N394.6 billion in February, to N476.5 billion in the month of March.Also, according to information obtained from the NSE, First Bank of Nigeria Plc occupied the second position with 12.7 per cent increase in market capitalisation from N422.04 billion to N475.41 billion.

Nigerian Breweries Plc occupied the third position with an eight per cent rise in market capitalisation from N431.1 billion to N465.1 billion, while Guaranty Trust Bank Plc and United Bank for Africa Plc (UBA), retained the fourth and fifth positions. They both recorded increased market capitalisation of 15.7 per cent and 16.8 per cent, respectively.

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According to NSE, Zenith Bank Plc emerged the most active stock with transactions volume of 763.7 million shares, followed by Access Bank Plc with 559.1 million shares, while First Bank of Nigeria Plc placed third with 542.3 million shares.

UBA placed fourth with 538.2 million shares. Guaranty Trust Bank Plc occupied the fifth position with 524.9 million shares, while Diamond Bank Plc occupied the sixth slot with 452.9 million.The top three most active stocks accounted for 1.9 billion shares or 17.4 per cent of total traded stocks, while the top five most active stocks accounted for 2.93 billion or 27.3 per cent of total transactions during the month.

Zenith Bank plc recently, proposed a total dividend payout of N11.3 billion and a bonus of one-for-four for the reporting period ended December 31, 2009.The bank’s result indicates a pre-tax profit of N35 billion and a profit after tax of N20.6 billion out of which over N11 billion has been set aside for dividend pay-out. During the period, Zenith recorded gross revenue of N277 billion, up from N211 billion in 2008, representing a 31 per cent revenue growth and increasing dominance in its market share.

Equally impressive is the Capital Adequacy Ratio of the bank, which stands at about 30 per cent, three times the 10 per cent regulatory minimum requirement under the Basel II framework and also above the industry average. The bank’s liquidity ratio stood at 60 per cent and is more than double the 25 per cent minimum regulatory requirement. This very strong liquidity position is the product of well-articulated risk management policies and practices.