Nepse, brokers make a killing

KATHMANDU: The brokers are having a field day. Their net commission has doubled and the Nepal Stock Exchange's (Nepse) has trebled in a year.

In the fiscal 2008-09, the total net commission earning of the brokers was Rs 296.47 million. Compare this to the situation a year ago. It was only Rs 143.45 million. Similarly, the Nepse's commission has also gone up to Rs 72.75 million, triple from Rs 25.22 million, according to Securities Board of Nepal — the regulatory authority of the capital market.

This has translated to a windfall for the individual brokers too.

Nepal Stock House (Broker No 14) has made the maxium killing last fiscal. The earning stands at Rs 25.24 million as net commission. However, Kumari Securities (Broker no 1) had earned only Rs 14.92 million a year ago.

The increase in the market size has helped the brokers to rake up a tidy sum.

Though the Midas Stock Broking (Broker no 21) earned Rs 2.86 million, the figure, by no means, is unimpressive.

As per the rule, brokers are liable to pay 25 per cent commission to the Nepse. Besides, they paid Rs 48.49 million as tax to the government.

Many are now finding the profession a lucrative one. The scenario became rosy only after 2002 when the market gathered momentum.

The market capitalisation at present stands at over Rs 4 trillion. It was Rs 600 million in 1994.

Unfortunately, the number of brokers has not increased, which makes it difficult for the investors.

At present, there are 23 brokers in the secondary market. Of them, half are active in secondary market. Altogether, they have earned Rs 296.47 million as net commission.

Back in 1994, there were only 25 brokers. Subsequently it increased to 32.

"The government should allow us to open branches or let our sub-brokers trade," said Nabaraj Pokharel, ex-president, Nepal Stock Brokers' Association.

Rabindra Bhattarai, share analyst and a lecturer at Shanker Dev Campus, suggested that the brokers' headcount should be increased.

Nepse, which started trading 15 years ago, failed twice in adding to the existing brokers' list. Both its attempts came a cropper.