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Tuesday, March 17, 2009

New SEC dept to streamline activities of mutual funds, bond market

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Monday established a new department to streamline the activities of mutual funds, asset-backed securities and bond market.

The department titled Mutual Fund and Special Purpose Vehicle will make the growing stock market more viable through transparent and efficient operation of the diversified instruments," said Anwarul Kabir Bhuyian, executive director of the SEC.

As these instruments are being considered as risk free investment tools, so the commission has set up the separate department to make the approval process of more mutual funds faster and easier, he said adding this step is also aimed to institutionalize the market.

The newly launched department will also look into the calculation process of the Net Asset Value (NAV) in order to ensure transparency in the mutual funds' investment, he added.

Currently, a total of 17 close-end mutual funds are listed on the bourses. Of them, state-owned Investment Corporation of Bangladesh (ICB) and its subsidiaries have floated 12 mutual funds while BSRS one such fund and private-run AIMS, Bangladesh three such funds.

Another, mutual fund Prime Finance First Mutual Fund worth Tk 200 million managed by the ICB will make debut today (Tuesday).

More mutual funds including EBL First Mutual Fund worth Tk 1.0 billion is in the pipeline.

"The market is growing fast and the total market capitalisation of DSE now hovers $ 15 billion which was below $ 5.0 billion only in late 2006, so the capacity of the SEC as the regulator should be enhanced to that proportion," a market analyst said.

Established in 1993, the SEC had earlier 14 departments namely administration, Capital Issue Department (IPO), capital market regulatory reforms and compliance, CDS, corporate finance, enforcement, finance, law, management information systems, registration and licencing, research and development, supervision and regulation of markets and intermediaries and surveillance.

The Financial Express



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