“Broker’s $65,000 Trade ‘Error’ Linked to Punja Family – What Happened?”

A broker was behind a $65,000 trade “error” linked to the Punja family name. The error on the South Pacific Stock Exchange involved four companies, three of which were connected to the Punja family. These companies were FMF, Rice Company of Fiji, and Atlantic & Pacific Packaging Company Limited, all of which have directors with the Punja surname. The fourth company involved was Fijian Holdings Limited.

South Pacific Stock Exchange (SPX) Chief Executive Sheraj Obeyesekene stated that $65,033.56 were traded before the cancellation. “Cancelled trades do not have an impact on pricing, hence there has been no impact on the indices,” he said. Consequently, there will be no financial impact on any investors since the settlement did not take place. Obeyesekene clarified that the placement of orders was due to human error from one of the brokers and not due to any ill intent.

The trade, executed on July 5, was cancelled after a review determined that the broker representative had placed the orders in error.

SPX Records Encouraging Trading Activity during First Half of 2024

The South Pacific Stock Exchange reported encouraging trading activity in the first six months of 2024, with the trading value during this period being considerably higher than in the same period in 2023. Over $33 million worth of trade was recorded in the first half of 2024, compared to $3.4 million in 2023, according to Obeyesekere.

The SPX Total Return Index grew by 4.44 percent since the start of the year. “Market performance in June contributed to a strong end to the period, with 289 transactions resulting in an aggregate volume of 4,370,649 shares and a trading value of $10 million, an improvement of 4,504.14 percent compared to May 2024, driven largely by significant institutional investor activity,” the exchange reported.

Market capitalization increased by 3.25 percent in June, ending the month at $3.46 billion. Chairperson Nitin Gandhi expressed optimism about continued momentum, saying, “SPX is in a period of transition, and we look forward to exploring new opportunities to grow the investor base. We invite the Fijian public to actively explore stock market investments as a means to achieve financial growth.”

Feedback: frederica.elbourne@fijisun.com.fj

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