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SIB hires Bank of Africa executive to head online forex trading desk

The CMA said it would take appropriate action
The CMA said it would take appropriate action against people illegally conducting online foreign exchange trade. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

Standard Investment Bank has tapped a top executive of Bank of Africa to head online foreign exchange trading business.

The investment banker has appointed Nahashon Mungai as the executive director of its new global markets diversions in the push to increase the firm’s revenue streams that include share and bond trading commissions as well as advisory fees.

Capital Markets Authority in mid-December granted Standard Investment Bank Kenya’s first money manager licence, which allows to manage investments for its online forex trading clients and develop appropriate investment strategy.

“This being a specialised business, we tapped Nahashon because he is one of the best in the market and brings to the SIB a wealth of experience,” James Wangunyu, executive chairman of Standard Investment Bank said in a statement yesterday.

Mr Mungai was head of treasury at Bank of Africa and worked as a trader at KCB. His appointment marks a shift given banks have in recent years raided investment banks in their quest for financial supermarket model that allows them to offer banking, insurance and stocks trading.

“Unlike banks that conduct forex trading on their books, we offer forex trading on behalf of clients and SIB is the first to be licensed in Kenya under money manager category,” Mr Wangunyu said.

In October, the regulator had warned Kenyans against online foreign exchange trading through unlicensed entities, saying they risked losing investments.

Paul Muthaura, CEO of the Capital Markets Authority, said at the time he had observed several individuals and entities carrying on or purporting to carry on the business of online foreign exchange broker or a money manager without licensing.

“As a money manager, Standard Investment Bank will conduct financial analysis and monitor foreign exchange portfolio investments on behalf of its clients,” the CMA said.

Dollar/shilling currency trading is regulated by the central bank. The CMA said it would take appropriate action against people illegally conducting online foreign exchange trade.

All online foreign exchange brokers or money managers not licensed by the Authority should cease trading immediately, the regulator warned.

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