Signs of fraud in Opes Prime collapse

Signs of fraud in Opes Prime collapse
CEO Laurie Emini told staff to top up
Accounts of big clients with margin calls
ANZ, Merrill dumping A.2 bln of stock
9 firms called trading halts
Home loan growth slowed in February
Still grew 12.1% despite housing slump
S&P affirms finance company ratings
All depends on liquidity
Ratings agency Standard and Poor’s says liquidity is the key issue it will consider in future ratings of finance companies in New Zealand. “The dual domestic and global credit issues have meant that most finance companies are now struggling to grow, or have decided tactically to curtail new lending to preserve liquidity,” S&P said in its industry credit outlook.

“Liquidity is expected to remain as the key industry risk and a critical credit rating factor in our analysis of the sector for the short-to-medium term,” it said.

“While funding costs have risen markedly since mid-2007, and with companies having mixed success passing on their higher borrowing costs to their loan clients, declining interest margins are an important but less urgent rating consideration for companies compared with their continuing need to shore up adequate liquidity.”