Companies quoted on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) have up till the close of business tomorrow to submit their financial statements and reports for the third quarter of this business year. Companies that fail to meet the deadline will be sanctioned and flagged with a red alert of poor corporate governance.
Several companies have not submitted their earnings reports and are, therefore, expected to submit the reports before the close of work tomorrow to avoid sanctions that range from N100,000 to N100 million.
More than half of the companies expected to submit their third quarter reports have not submitted as at the weekend, according to the tally provided by the NSE. Thirty eight companies had rushed through the last week to submit their third quarter reports.
Not less than 43 companies have been sanctioned so far this year with fines ranging from N100,000 to N35 million. Companies that delayed their financial statements and accounts also face threats of suspension and delisting in addition to the monetary fines. A total of 23 companies are currently under suspension for failure to meet earlier deadlines for earnings reports.
Under the extant rules at the Exchange, quoted companies are required to submit interim or quarterly report not later than 30 calendar days after the end of the relevant period. Most quoted companies including all banks, major manufacturers, oil and gas companies, breweries and cement companies use the 12-month Gregorian calendar year as their business year. The deadline for the nine-month period ended September 30, 2018 is thus Tuesday, October 30, 2018.
Quoted companies are also required to publish the earnings reports within five business days after the date of filing, in at least two national daily newspapers, and post it on the company’s website, with the web address disclosed in the newspaper publication.
Also, an electronic copy of the publication shall be filed with the Exchange on the same day as the newspaper publication. Where the company chooses to audit its quarterly accounts, it shall be required to file such accounts not later than 60 calendar days after the relevant quarter.
However, general waiver is usually given in the event of general disruption to industrial activities such as strike, national crises, many public holidays and other circumstances that in the judgement of the Exchange may significantly impact the 30-day timeline given to companies to prepare and submit the quarterly report. There were no general disruptions during the period under review.
Under the rules at the Exchange, late submission under the first instance of 90 days could attract N9 million, the additional period of 90 days will attract N18 million while such delay beyond the first 180 days to the next 180 days could attract as much as N72 million, bringing fines payable by a defaulting company within a year to N99 million.
Meanwhile, investors traded 1.45 billion shares worth N15.26 billion in 16,682 deals last week at the NSE as against a total of 1.38 billion shares valued at N15.15 billion traded in 14,033 deals two weeks ago.
The traditional most active financial services sector remained atop activity chart with 1.22 billion shares valued at N9.48 billion in 10,520 deals; representing 83.94 per cent and 62.11 per cent of the total equity turnover volume and value respectively. The conglomerates sector followed with 92.19 million shares worth N452.95 million in 719 deals while consumer goods sector ranked third with a turnover of 76.57 million shares worth N3.71 billion in 2,471 deals.
The three most active stocks were First City Monument Bank Plc, Access Bank Plc and Sterling Bank Plc. The three most active stocks accounted for 695.4 million shares worth N2.0 billion in 3,494 deals, representing 47.83 per cent and 13.10 per cent of the total equity turnover volume and value respectively.