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Apex Foods or DSE: Who’s Concealing Information?

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Allegations of insider trading have surfaced against Apex Foods Limited, a company listed on the stock market in the country. Recently, there has been a sudden surge in shareholding by the company’s executives, leading to speculation among market participants.

The company claims that the sudden increase in shareholding by more than 17 percent occurred due to the inclusion of the chairman’s wife in the board of directors. The matter has been brought to the attention of the Dhaka Stock Exchange (DSE) by the company. However, the DSE states that they have not received any information from the company regarding this issue. Investors are skeptical and uncertain about these developments, and the company’s shareholders are also expressing concerns.

Apex Foods has violated Section 1 of the Securities and Exchange Commission’s 2015 Law by failing to disclose sensitive information promptly. According to the directive, every listed issuer on the stock exchange must promptly notify the Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission and the relevant stock exchange (if listed on both exchanges) in writing, signed by the Chairman, CEO, or Company Secretary, along with fax and special message delivery, or courier service if available, within thirty minutes of making any material price-sensitive information available or coming into effect. The information must also be published immediately in two widely circulated daily newspapers (one in Bengali and the other in English) and an online publication to ensure maximum dissemination.

On the other hand, investors have also accused Apex Foods of violating privacy by holding a board meeting on April 20 without informing them. Although there is a provision to inform the investors about the decision of the management board by April 20, the investors still do not know about the matter. In addition, the company’s share price has increased by Tk 141.50 or 46.22% as a percentage since the company’s board meeting.

The owners and directors of Apex Foods have not made any announcement regarding the increase in their shareholding, despite their ownership share in the company increasing. The Dhaka Stock Exchange website did not show any announcement from the company regarding the purchase of shares last month. However, it was suddenly discovered that the owners and directors had acquired a significant number of shares, although there was no explanation given on the DSE website.

When asked about this, the company’s secretary Kamrul Islam stated to the news media Orthosongbad that the owners and directors did not purchase any shares. Therefore, there is no such information available on the Dhaka Stock Exchange. However, the wife of the company’s chairman, Jafar Ahmed, held 17.33% of the shares. She was previously a regular shareholder but was recently included in the board of directors. As a result, her shares are now combined with those of the owners and directors.

He further stated that the matter of appointing the chairman’s wife to the company’s board of directors was communicated to the DSE two or three days ago. Although the information was conveyed to the DSE regarding the inclusion of the chairman’s wife in the board of directors of Apex Foods, it has not been publicized through the trading system by the exchange.

The Managing Director of the Dhaka Stock Exchange, Mr. M. Saifur Rahman Majumdar, stated that the DSE was not informed by the company about the appointment of new directors in Apex Foods. Only the shareholder position is reported to the DSE at the end of each month, and the shareholder position has been updated accordingly. Apex Foods will be blamed as to why the appointment of the new director was not informed to DSE.

According to sources, Apex Foods had a shareholding of 36.06% among the company’s directors and executives until June 30, 2022, as stated on the DSE website. The same amount of shares was also held by the company’s directors and executives in the following year’s March. However, based on the recent information provided to the Dhaka Stock Exchange and the Apex Foods website, the company’s directors and executives currently hold 30 lakh 44 thousand 450 shares, which accounts for 53.39% of the total shares. Therefore, there has been an increase of 17.33% in the shareholding of the company’s directors and executives within a month.

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Weekly U.S. Stock Market Reports Diverse Performance

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Reviewing the U.S. Stock Markets, the Nasdaq Composite, recorded a decent hike of 555 points, reaching a closing value of 17,688 points by the end of the week. Similarly, the S&P 500 index showed a positive trend, gaining 85 point to settle at 5,431 points. Meanwhile, DJIA Index experienced a notable drop, losing 209 points during the week and concluding at 38,589 points after a week of gaining.

In contrast, Russell 3000 Index saw a gain in week performance, with a slight hike of 40 points to reach 3,077 points by the end of the week.

Moving to Russell 2000 Index, demonstrated a notable drop of 20 point, ending the week at 2,006 points.

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Weekly European Stocks Shows Negative Result

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In the Outgoing week, the European stock market displayed a massive losing performance.

Here is the data on the weekly performance of the European Stock Market, The STOXX Europe 600 index, which is considered a leading benchmark for the European market and covers approximately 90 percent of the market capitalization across 17 countries, reported a drop of 12.5 points to close at 511.05.

The United Kingdom’s FTSE 100, one of the most widely followed indices in Europe, also showed a significant drop, losing 99 points or finishing the session at 8,146.

In Germany, the DAX 30 index, lost by 555 points to reach 18,002, while France’s CAC 498 decreased by 9 points to stop at 7,503 at the end of the trading day.

Italy’s FTSE MIB, which covers the top 40 stocks traded on the Milan Stock Exchange, decreased by 1,995 points to 32,665. However, Spain’s IBEX 35, added by 412 points, to close at 10,992.

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South Asian Stocks Reports Gaining Performance in Recent Week

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A review of South Asian stock markets shows that India’s Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) index BSE Sensex has added 299 points during the week. At the end of the week, the index stood at 76,992 points. On the other hand, the Nifty-50 index of the country’s National Stock Exchange gained by 175 points last week. At the end of the week, the index stood at 23,465 points.

Pakistan Stock Exchange Index ‘KSE 100’, shed 2,926 points last week. After a week of losing, the index settled at 76,742 points.

On the other hand, The Sri Lankan stock market index adds, and the Colombo Stock Exchange index ‘ASPI’ increased by 208 points in a week. After a week the index settled at 12,314 points.

Bhutan’s stock market index ‘BSI’ added 68 points hence the index stood at 1,515 points throughout the whole week. Nepal’s ‘NEPSE’ gain 35 points, therefore the index stands at 2,112 points.

Hence Dhaka Stock Exchange: The benchmark index ‘DSEX’ dropped by 119.51 points or 2.28 percent, in the outgoing week. At the end of the week, the index stands at 5,117 points.

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