TFC buy against NSB Act: Legal experts

  Published : 12:36 am  May 10, 2012  |  2,152 views  |  4 comments  |  Print This Post   |  E-mail to friend
Share Button

Dealing a fresh blow to the contentious deal legal, experts say NSB’s decision to buy a 13% stake in The Finance Co. Plc (TFC) last month had contravened the National Savings Bank Act.

They said as per Section 39 of the NSB Act No. 30 of 1971, the savings giant before investing in a particular stock (other than those  in which Government has controlling 50% stake) must obtain approval from Minister (of Finance) in consultation with the Monetary Board. This section deals with authorised business of the bank.

At present the Minister of Finance is President Mahinda Rajapaksa and this requirement as per the Act has added a new dimension to the NSB-TFC deal bringing the country’s Chief Executive directly in to the fiasco. However last week, he ordered the Finance Ministry to look into the deal after which the Treasury Secretary suspended NSB from paying until an inquiry is completed.
The 27 April deal of NSB a buying 13% stake in TFC for Rs. 390 million (around eight million shares at Rs. 50 each, above Rs. 20 from the prevailing market price) from a consortium of sellers including two TFC Directors, one of whom is also the CEO of the broking firm doing the transaction, has sparked widespread criticism over a host of reasons including bad corporate governance and alleged insider trading.
However, the TFC buy isn’t the first stock market deal of NSB, which has an exposure of Rs. 7 billion in listed equity investments. Market analysts said it was impractical for an institution like NSB to seek approval for each stock market investment. NSB has been a key local institutional investor in the market like in the case of EPF and ETF though by law the major exposure is to Government securities.
Speculation was rife that the deal would be cancelled with the shares going back to the sellers, who will be required to repay the settlement bank Sampath Bank which paid for the deal though NSB hadn’t remitted funds nor did it reject the buy though having the freedom to do so.
The Board of Directors of Sampath Bank, which has a Rs. 390 million overdrawn status within the Central Depositors System of the CSE on account of TFC deal fiasco, met yesterday evening on the same issue. The CSE has also suspended NSB’s custodial bank role in view of its failure to pay for the share purchase.


4 Responses to “TFC buy against NSB Act: Legal experts”

  1. hasthi on May 10th, 2012 10:04 am

    Aside from the ‘insider dealing’ allegations and the legality issues, I am wondering why NSB could not make payment directly. When they pay thru Sampath Bank, surely, there is additional cost incurred. Of course Sampath Bank will be happy to earn some additional income, but who looses it from the NSB end. The poor account holders.

    Can we get the Director Board and others involved in these types of decision making to replenish the losses to the poor account holders?

  2. srilal on May 11th, 2012 1:08 am

    1.when a broker sets a deal up as this one he goes to Singapore to pay the buyer under the table so the deal can get done above market . dinal wijemana was in Singapore the week before the deal. can a stock broker make so much money from a nine to five job to pay for this deal as well as accumulate over a billion rupees if you check wijemanas name in annul reports. the SEC should call for all banking information for all past transactions if they want to bust the mafia in the market.

  3. Nadun on May 11th, 2012 2:04 pm

    Of course there is no practice in the world where NSB will carry Rs.390 mn in cash to the sellers and settle a transaction.

  4. TFC buy against NSB Act: Legal experts | Asia-Europe Business Forum on May 12th, 2012 5:40 pm

    [...] Click here to view the original post. [...]

Feel free to leave a comment