SEC, CFA join to further capital market | Daily News


Industry directed to follow global standards:

SEC, CFA join to further capital market

Ravi Abeysuriya  pix by Dinesh Perera
Ravi Abeysuriya pix by Dinesh Perera

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in partnership with the Chartered Financial Analyst Institute (CFA) held an informational session on Asset Manager Codes of Professional Conduct and Global Investment Performance Standards yesterday. Both standards are set by the not for profit CFA. The event followed an MOU signing between the SEC and CFA.

CFA Advocacy– Chair/ Director, Ravi Abeysuriya said in Sri Lanka “Unless you are fairly rich you can’t take a bet on the capital market. It is not a betting game but that is what is happening. It should be real investing for retirement. Capital markets in Sri Lanka have huge potential. To realize that we champion ethical behavior and build an investment industry that serves the interest of investors and society.”

CFA works on improving capital markets in Sri Lanka. Abeysuriya said “A statement of Investor rights has been published with 50 tangible steps an investment professional can take to restore trust and confidence in the industry. CFA Sri Lanka hopes to introduce more widely two standards. The Asset Management Code and the Global Investment Performance Standards (GIPS) will be more widely adopted with assistance from the SEC. Local audit firms will be able to help certify GIPS standards.”

He added “When you ask people if in addition to the EPF if they want their money invested they will say they don’t want.

They have no confidence in capital markets.

They want the government to give an assurance of the pension and fund it through the budget. Not by investing in capital markets.”

“If you see countries like Singapore and New Zealand a much bigger component of their long term assets is invested in the capital market. There is a host of changes that needs to happen especially in the government space. We all know what happened in Sri Lanka. To see people have some kind of confidence in managing their money.”

He said, “The true purpose of finance is to put resources into productive use to transform and contribute to economic growth and stability and ultimately to the well being of the people. In Sri Lanka, our society is losing out. The majority are not invested in the capital markets largely due to a lack of confidence and trust.”

Chairman SEC, Ranel T. Wijesinha said “I don’t want these passionate MOUs on shelves. We came to a target. I said we will have the event in the first week of November. Sometimes you have to set deadlines otherwise its Parkinson’s Law and work expand to the time available.”

He added “From the perspective of the SEC we are a public interest institution. We owe a duty of care to the public. Every single license is an extension of that public interest obligation we have. Let’s delink marketing of institutions from conveying the importance of standards.”

Wijesinha said that the expedition of SEC investigations had been placed in political manifestos. He said that there were measures to reduce insider trading. He said, “We have found several interests where brokers very clearly did not have the client interests.”.

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