In Barbados: Opportunities Open Up for Investors via Government Securities

4 October 2011


Some Good News For A Change

Investors will have much to consider in the coming days as they have some choices of taking up two sets of Government investment instruments and some equities as well.
In what seems an active period in the local capital market amid liquidity in the banking sector, the Government of Barbados launched its fifth issue of longer term instruments since the start of the new fiscal year.

Last Friday a $50 million Barbados Government issue of debentures went on the market. Then yesterday the 68th issue of Government Savings Bonds was opened for public subscription. Government is seeking to raise $10 million from the Bonds.

And as if these are not enough, investor/investors are looking to offload more than 150 000 shares in a range of companies listed on the Barbados Stock Exchange.

The Central Bank of Barbados announced Friday the opening of the seven and three quarter per cent debentures which are aimed at raising the $50 million. The debentures will mature in 20 years.

In relation to the other issue, the Central Bank said that the Savings Bonds will be available in denominations of $50, $100, $500, and $1 000 and $5 000.

Application for the bonds should be made to the commercial banks who will act as the authorising agents to the Central Bank of Barbados.

In May this year two issues of debentures were opened for subscription. While one carried a maturity of three years, the other was for 12 years. Then in August, $100 million also went on the market. That will mature in 12 years time.

In the meantime, the Barbados Stock Exchange, which ended the third quarter with market capitalisation of $9.3 billion, revealed a number of shares up for purchase.

The stock market report shows that in effect close to 180 000 common shares across a number of companies are available for purchase.

Stocks have been tendered for sale by investor/investors in the Barbados Farms Limited, Jamaica Money Market Brokers Limited, Barbados National Bank, Cave Shepherd and Trinidad Cement Limited among other companies.

The instruments, as well as the equities, offer local investors another opportunity to diversify their investments, and not to place all their funds on deposits at commercial banks.

Currently the minimum deposit rates at commercial banks are about 2.50 per cent while Government three- and six-month treasury bills are fetching just over three per cent.

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