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The DataBank held their 2017 mutual funds Annual General Meeting with the stakeholders in Accra to enhance the structure of the Bank.

Prof. Kojo Addae Mensah who is the chairman of the Bank stated that, "Ghana's economy went through a  recovery phase in, 2017,underpinned by a commitment to restore fiscal credibility (through the 2017 budget) revived investor confidence, which resulted in substantial offshore demand for cedi -denominated debts, supplying forex to restore the Cedi's stability

The Ghana cedi thus closed 2017 with an annual depreciation of 4.9 percent compared to 9.7 percent recorded in 2016. GDP in 2017 was recorded at 8.5 underpinned by a substantial recovery in oil and gas production. A conscious blend of fiscal and monetary policy subdued inflation pressure, pushing headline inflation downward from 15.4 percent in December 2016 to 11.8 percent in December 2017".

According to him, the Ghanaian equities market turned its fortunes around in 2017 after two consecutive years of recording losses. The Ghana stock Exchange emerged as one of the best performing stock market in the sub- region. In USD terms,the benchmark Ghana Stock Exchange composite index (GSE -CI) recorded a Return Of 47.8 percent, second only to Malawi (61.4 percent) in the sub-par region. The course ended the year with an impressive Return Of 53.7 percent in cedi terms. Your Fund's balanced mandate thus benefited from the impressive returns in the equities market, helping to offset the lower returns on fixed - income securities and drive the strong price gains in BFund".

He concluded, "looking ahead, we expect Ghana to build on the economic gains recorded in 2017, supported by an improved mactoeconomic environment. Ghana's real GDP growth is expected to remain robust at 7.8 percent for 2018 according to Databank's forecast (IMF:8.9 percent) ahead of the 2018 sub-sahara Africa average growth rate of 3.4percent (IMF estimate). The outlook for the cedi remains positive while inflation appears to be under control".

Group CEO of Databank and Chairman of BFund, Kojo Addae Mensah informed BFund shareholders of the significant growth of the Fund's Assets under Management from 19.61million (as at December 31,2016 ) to GHC 58.11 million (as at December 31,2017).BFund closed the year at a price of GHC 0.5768 per share, posting a Return Of 30.91percent at the end of 2017.

Speaking on the performance of Epack, Ghana's first and best-performing equity mutual fund, Board chairman, Keli Gadzekpo stated that," Epack recorded an impressive 37.72percent price gains to close the year at GHC 3.4078 per share with a cumulative return since inception (in October 1996)of 33,978percent .Epack also recorded a growth in AUM, from GHC 125.49 million by the end of 2016 to GHC 180.33 million by end of 2017".

Source | | Kofi Dwumah

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