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From Nigeria to India, Gen Z taps apps to invest

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There’s a new generation of investors in town. They’re young, they get their tips on YouTube, and they’re armed with apps that make the stock markets more accessible than ever before.

US investment app Robinhood has made a splash in the West with its mission to open the markets to “everyday people”, but from Nigeria to India, Gen Z are flocking to homegrown equivalents.

“I don’t really care about my college, to be honest. It’s all market, market and market,” said Delhi student Ishan Srivastava, who started trading last December.

Srivastava uses a handful of Indian trading apps, including Zerodha and Upstox, and often gets his financial advice from YouTube. The ambitious 20-year-old hopes to build a diverse investment portfolio and then retire by 45.

In India in particular, the investment revolution has been aided by a boom in “demat” accounts — easy-to-open electronic accounts for holding financial securities, equity or debt.

But a similar app-led investment craze is also underway 8,000 kilometres (5,000 miles) away, in Nigeria.

Banks ‘less attractive by the month’

The country’s economic hub Lagos has long been known for its hustle and celebration of success, but the weakness of the naira currency has put extra pressure on youths to make cash as the cost of living has rocketed.

Nigerians have flocked to local apps such as Trove and Risevest which allow them to invest in US stocks, widely seen as a means of protecting wealth as the naira nightmare continues.

“I had the option of putting the money in the bank, but that is looking less attractive by the month,” said 23-year-old Dahunsi Oyedele.

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“Sometimes I put my money in Risevest and get some returns in a week. Imagine getting one or two per cent returns on 100,000 naira ($240) each week — that’s small, but it means a lot.”

For a few months after losing his job as a tech journalist due to the pandemic, Oyedele covered his rent by trading cryptocurrencies.

He is far from alone in turning to speculation during the Covid-19 crisis, as a combination of mass joblessness, stay-at-home orders and — for the fortunate — underused savings have encouraged people worldwide to dabble in trading for the first time.

In the US alone more than 10 million new investors entered the markets in the first half of 2021, according to JMP Securities, some of them drawn in by social media hype around “meme stocks” like GameStop.

Worldwide, the new arrivals are largely young. Robinhood’s median US customer age is 31; India’s Upstox says more than 80 per cent of its users are 35 or under, a figure matched by Nigeria’s Bamboo (83 per cent).

Trading apps have lowered the barriers to entry for youngsters in part by offering fractional trade.

A share in Amazon, for instance, is currently worth more than $3,000 — unaffordable for the average Gen Z or slightly older millennial. But a small fraction of that share might be within reach, particularly on an app that charges zero commission.

Flirting with danger?

Trading apps may have been hailed as democratising access to the markets, but critics say they could also make it easier for inexperienced young investors to get into hot water.

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In the US, the Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating whether apps are irresponsibly encouraging overtrading using excessive email alerts and by making investment feel like a game.

And Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority warned in March that the new cohort of young investors — who skew in the UK towards being women and from minority backgrounds — have more to lose.

Nearly two-thirds of the new investors it surveyed said “a significant investment loss would have a fundamental impact on their current or future lifestyle”, the FCA found.

“This newer group of self-investors are more reliant on contemporary media (e.g. YouTube, social media) for tips and news,” the watchdog noted.

“This trend appears to be prompted by the accessibility offered by new investment apps.”

Some young investors have already been burned.

Mumbai-based product designer Ali Attarwala is giving trading a break after a bad experience with cryptocurrencies earlier this year.

“These apps make it easy to buy speculative assets like crypto, but there is still a lot of volatility in these new assets,” the 30-year-old told AFP.

Srivastava has also had ups and downs, but he sees his losses as part of the learning experience.

“When I started, I blew up almost 50 per cent of the capital,” he said.

“I don’t treat them as my losses, but like education fees.”

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NCC says 5G services to be expected by Q4 of 2022

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NCC says 5G services to be expected by Q4 of 2022.

The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) has asked Nigerians to expect 5G services by the fourth quarter of this year.

NCC Head, Spectrum Administration, Mr Usman Aliyu, made this known while speaking on 5G deployment at a capacity building workshop organised for ICT reporters by the Commission in Abuja.

According to him, the cleaning of the Bands has commenced with the migration of the FSS users from 3.4-3.8 GHz spectrum following the ratification of the use of the Nigerian Communications Satellite by the National Frequency Management Council.

Aliyu who listed the many benefits of the technology said it would improve the growth and quality of service in several sectors such as education, health, and financial services.

With the successful auction of the 5G spectrum last year, Aliyu said Nigeria became the first country in Africa to successfully conduct a full 5G spectrum auction without the services of a consultant and the first software auction to be conducted since 2001.

He said “5G auction committee was constituted, Information memorandum was developed, consultation on Memorandum carried out, key stakeholders responded, corrections were made on IM before the auction.

“Five options were made ad two were made available. Hopefully by Q4 this year we should have 5G services in the country. The current status involves inflation and increases in the exchange rate that affects the cost of services; quality and adequate power supply, relocating of services, guard band provision, coordination with neighbouring countries,” he said.

5G Spectrum auction of 3.45 GHz spectrum was conducted in late 2021 went through 11 rounds exceeding the revenue projection from the reserve price of $199,374,000.

The auction process came to an end when MTN and Mafab posted an exit bid of $273 million, while Airtel posted a final bid of $270 million.

The auction generated proceeds of $22.5 billion in total.

Earlier in his welcome address, the Director of Public Affairs of NCC, Dr Ikechukwu Adinde, restated the commitment to maintaining the age-long tradition of a mutually beneficial relationship with the media.

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According to him, the event was an avenue to strengthen and maintain the long-standing mutually beneficial relationships with the media as partners of the Commission.

He further commended the journalists for their contributions to the visibility of the Commission as well as the development of the Nigerian telecom sector.

‘The NCC recognises the importance of NITRA as a strategic ally, adding that this accounts for why the Commission has on several occasions provided capacity building and training for members of NITRA with the aim of providing the platform for equipping NITRA as its stakeholders and partners from the Media with the knowledge and skill required to do their jobs effectively, efficiently and in the most professional manner.

As you may be aware, the communications sector, which the NCC regulates, is arguably the most dynamic and vibrant sector of the Nigerian economy, and we believe this demands that our media partners are brought up to speed with recent developments for enhanced and well-informed reportage of the industry,’ the DPA said.

‘Thus, the need for your sustained support as we continue to discharge our mandate of regulating this dynamic sector for the benefit of Nigerians and the economy cannot be over-emphasised.

‘The implication of this meeting, therefore, is to further impress on your consciousness that the fate of Nigeria’s telecommunications industry, especially in the media will continue to be squarely entrusted to your good and capable hands.

‘I want to use this opportunity to call on NITRA and all its members to remain supportive of NCC’s programmes, activities and initiatives. We urge you to continue to demonstrate the enthusiasm and professionalism which have informed adequate and factual reportage by your members over the years.

‘On our part, we will continue to work with members of your association to accomplish your goals and objectives which have defined our shared interests in building the telecom sector for the greater good of Nigeria.

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‘The National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS), the New National Broadband Plan (2020-2025), the NCC Strategic Management Plan (2020-2024), the creation of the Digital Economy Department, as well as the Nigeria Office for Developing the Indigenous Telecommunications Sector (NODITS) all underscore the policy directions of the Federal Government which the NCC is expected to drive aggressively working with our supervising ministry and other relevant industry stakeholders to extend the frontiers of the digital economy for Nigerians. It is expected that you will play a critical role in putting in the public domain the achievement of the NCC in this respect.’

He further reiterated the Commission’s resolve in ensuring that Nigerians and all those living in Nigeria are carried along on the Commission’s journey to build Nigeria’s digital economy of our dream, and the Media are critical Stakeholders.

In his own remarks, the President of NITRA, Abuja Chapter, Mr Blessing Olaifa, represented by the chapter’s Secretary-General, Mr Emmanuel Elebeke, expressed the organisation’s profound appreciation to NCC for organising the capacity building programme for NITRA members.

He noted that the relationship between the Commission and the media organisation has been a very cordial one spanning many years, adding that it was a thing of joy that the age-long mutually beneficial relationship has been sustained by the current management.

‘I want to commend you for your consistency in churning out progressive policies and regulations that have positioned NCC as a pacesetter in Africa.

‘Fresh in our mind is the recent 5G spectrum auction won by MTN and Mafab Communications which has been receiving accolades even from the international community.

‘Nigeria today boasts of 6 submarine cables with more to come courtesy of NCC’s visionary management and quality regulation.’

The group then appealed to the Commission to institute an ICT award to encourage journalists to work harder and improve their reportage.

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Price of Internet Set to Crash in Nigeria as Google 5G Subsea Cable Touches Down in Nigeria

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Price of Internet Set to Crash in Nigeria as Google 5G Subsea Cable Touches Down in Nigeria.

A statement by Google on Thursday says Nigerians will soon enjoy cheaper internet as the company’s Equiano subsea cable lands in Nigeria The cable which runs from Portugal first landed in Lome, the Togolese capital before touching down in Lagos According to Google, the 5G capable cable will boost the national GDP, increase productivity and create jobs in the country by 2025

Nigerians may be in for a good time as cheaper internet services beckon after Google announced that its Equiano subsea cable would crash the price of Internet costs by 21 per cent after deployment. The Punch reports that the internet data giant announced the landing of the subsea cable in partnership with its cable partner, WIOCC in Lagos on Thursday, April 21, 2022. Google brings 5G cable to Lagos Credit: NurPhoto/Contributo Source: Getty Images The Alphabet-owned company stated that its cable would boost the speed of the internet six times in Nigeria which will amount to six per cent and also increase the country’s Gross Domestic Products (GDP) by $10.1bn in 2025 while adding about 1.6 million jobs in the same period. Google stated that the cable would also save 2.8 million tonnes of CO2 emissions annually after it becomes fully functional. Do you have a groundbreaking story you would like us to publish? Please reach us through [email protected]! The company stated that the Equiano cable in Portugal runs through more than 12,000km along the West Coast of the continent first landing in Lome, Togo, Lagos, Nigeria; Swakopmund in Namibia; Rupert Bay, Saint Helena and Melkbosstrand in South Africa. The tech giant said the cable will establish a valuable new high connectivity between the African continent and Europe. Google committed to digital transformation in Nigeria and Africa At the event announcing the launch of the digital cable, Google’s Director in West Africa, Juliet Ehimuan stated that the company is committed to aiding Africa’s digital transformation and is excited to see the impact of the landing of Equiano in Nigeria. According to the Director, the search engine behemoth has worked with renowned collaborators and in-country collaborators to make sure that the cable has the best potential effect in Nigeria and Africa. Chris Wood, WIOCC CEO stated that the firm is proud to collaborate with Google as the landing partner for Equiano Cable in Nigeria as it lands in the OADC Lagos data centre from where it would be extended to other centres in the state. Togo becomes first African country to get Google’s 5G network cable Meanwhile, Legit.ng reported that Google’s much-touted Equiano submarine cable has made a stop at Togo, the first on the African continent. The submarine cable will run from Portugal, along the West African coast connecting Europe to Togo, Nigeria, Namibia, South Africa and Saint, Helena. Read more: The cable carrying the fifth generation (5G) mobile service touched down in Togo on Friday, March 18, 2022, as part of a collaboration with the Togolese government, Google and CSSquared which is open-access broadband, TheCable reports.

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How LG’s Innovative Technology is Helping Families Eat Healthier and Reduce Food Wastage This Ramadan

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How LG’s Innovative Technology is Helping Families Eat Healthier and Reduce Food Wastage This Ramadan.

Global food waste is a massive issue with huge financial, ethical, and environmental costs. An estimated 1.3 billion tonnes of food is wasted globally each year, one third of all food produced for human consumption, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations. How LG’s Innovative Technology is Helping Families Eat Healthier and Reduce Food Wastage This Ramadan Source: UGC In Sub-Saharan Africa, post-harvest food losses are estimated to be worth USD 4 billion per year – or enough to feed at least 48 million people, according to the UN Environment Programme. The amount of food lost or wasted costs 2.6 trillion USD each year and is more than enough to feed the world’s 815 million hungry people four times over. During the month of Ramadan, trends have also shown that people tend to buy more food items than their normal requirements for self-consumption and hosting of guests. Due to the limited quantity of food to be consumed by people this additional quantity of cooked or made food becomes waste as Iftar is not usually eaten as night snacks or as Suhoor the next day. The demand for fresh food increases as majority of people are willing to spend an extra amount for the better quality of food. The causes of food wastage range from poor preservation to overly-selective customers, but regardless of cause, we can all pitch in to combat this global issue. One major way to prevent this in every household is to take advantage of refrigerators with healthier and smarter innovation. One global brand that have continuously rethink how food wastage can be better managed is home appliance leader, LG Electronics. LG’s never-ending quest to innovate its refrigerators and other home appliances has also led to the development of other technologies designed to create more efficient experiences. “Food waste is a known issue during Ramadan, and LG is committed to not just helping people eat healthy, but reducing food waste as well. We are leading the way with our green, smart and innovative refrigerators that feature advanced convenient, time-saving and consumer-centric technologies in unmatched designs. We will keep offering user-friendly products that offer our customers convenience, and benefit their overall health and productivity, said Mr. Brian Kang, General Manager, Home Appliances Division, LG Electronics West Africa. “At LG, we aim to create convenient solutions to meet the needs of everyone in the home. We want to help create happy family moments this Ramadan, and we are wholly invested in identifying the daily moments where families need our technology the most. Our appliances are designed to be smart, safe, convenient and time-saving, so everyone can enjoy more quality time at home”, he stated. LG Electronics has become a consumer’s delight in the African market as a consequence of the longevity of most of its products, particularly the refrigerator, which is available in a variety of configurations including Side by Side, Door-in-Door, and Top Freezer refrigerators. LG InstaView Door-in-Door™ Refrigerator Over a million customers choose LG’s iconic InstaView Door-in-Door refrigerator world-wide. This success can be attributed to the remarkable progress the company has made in the last couple of years by delivering products that promotes better hygiene and impeccable style with proven fresh food technologies. A great meal always starts with great ingredients, and keeping your ingredients fresh, healthy and tasty is what the LG InstaView Door-in-Door™ Refrigerator does best. Its sleek 33-inch glass panel which enables the family to peek into the refrigerator with a simple gesture of knocking twice. There is no need to open the refrigerator door to know what is inside, which means you reduce cold air loss by up to 41 percent and keep your ingredients fresher for longer. The Door-in-Door feature puts milk, yoghurt, juice and snacks within easy access, again, without ever having to open the main fridge door.

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LG Side by Side Refrigerators Designed for form and function, LG’s Side-by-Side fridges have the wow factor you’ve been looking for with a sleek flat-panel design, without sacrificing organization or capacity. LG’s Energy Star certified Side by Side refrigerators take energy efficiency to new heights, positively impacting your energy bill and lowering your energy consumption. It boast technology and head-turning design details that are almost as impressive as the instant access they provide. With the Slim SpacePlus™ Ice System in the Side by Side Refrigerator, no more bulky ice makers. LG’s unique ice system is inside the door, opening up an entire top shelf for more storage. It enables users store more food and beverages with abundant fridge space and easily make and access ice with the special Slim Indoor Ice Maker. Side by Side Refrigerators like GC-B247SLUV, GC-X257CVVV, and GC-B247KQDV have globally received good reviews and ratings for their exceptional innovations.

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LG Top Freezer Refrigerator The LG Top Freezer Refrigerator with Door Cooling, Linear Cooling and HygieneFresh+™ allows families to prepare for Ramadan with fresh fruits, vegetables and other essentials, without the fear of them spoiling, thanks to LG’s smart, consumer-centric technologies. The LinearCooling™ reduces temperature fluctuations, locking in the flavor of fresh. This means that you can confidently buy your weekly groceries without having to worry about them spoiling. With Smart ThinQ™, you can control and diagnose your refrigerator by your smart phone even when you’re not at home. Easily set the refrigerator temperature, control HygieneFresh+™, and diagnose your refrigerator with simple touch on your smart phone.

Hygiene Fresh+™ – Minimize bacteria and odors, maximize freshness Feature like LG’s HygieneFRESH+™ remove up to 99.99 percent of bacteria and filters out bad odours via a revolutionary 5-step filter, ensuring food is contamination-free and leftovers stay fresher for longer. Meanwhile, an air supply channel diffuses fresh, crisp air to each and every shelf. Hygiene Fresh+™ also offers additional convenience by eliminating the need to change or replace any filters. In addition to Hygiene Fresh+™, the Top Freezer incorporates the Fresh O Zone feature to maintain the optimum temperature for food that quickly go bad such as fish, poultry, and red meat. Users no longer have to freeze meat in order to preserve it for long periods of time. Fresh O Zone keeps items stored inside in their initial state of freshness, ready to be cooked anytime. Express Freeze LG InstaView Door-in-Door refrigerator comes with an Express Freeze option which enables user speed up ice production, chill drinks faster, and better freeze foods and deserts. You won’t have to memorize any buttons, either. LG’s ThinQ integration lets you activate Express Freeze and monitor temperatures with your smartphone, so there’s no need to repeatedly check on the fridge to see if things are ready. It also enables you to eliminate frequent trips to the grocery store with the largest capacity French door refrigerator, to stock up and store all your favorite foods. Every LG refrigerator is packed with all the latest innovations in LG technology. Find more about LG refrigerators to choose your most preferred option here:

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