Treasury slams "reckless" Viceroy report

Friday, February 2, 2018

National Treasury has condemned US research company Viceroy’s “reckless” report into Capitec bank.

“The National Treasury notes the reckless manner in which Viceroy, a US-based trader/research firm, released its report on Capitec bank earlier in the week. Viceroy is not regulated in South Africa, and by its own admission, has been trading [short selling] in Capitec shares ahead of the release of its report, and stood to benefit substantially from forcing the Capitec share price to fall by publishing its speculative report about the bank,” said the Treasury on Thursday.

This week the company released its report calling the bank a loan shark and that it should be placed under curatorship.

In its statement, Treasury said Viceroy operated anonymously and opaquely.

“The reckless way in which it has released its report is clear proof that it is not acting in the public interest nor in the interest of financial stability in South Africa. Whilst the Treasury expects prudential and market conduct regulators in South Africa to consider all relevant reports in the public domain, and to act where any risks or transgressions in the law are identified, Treasury is of the view that the Viceroy report provides no basis to put any bank under curatorship.”

In addition, Treasury has been in constant contact with the Registrar of Banks since the report was released, and is satisfied with the assurance from the South African Reserve Bank (SARB) that Capitec is well capitalised, liquid and solvent, and meets all prudential requirements. This means that the funds of depositors are safe.

In its response, the SARB said as part of its mandate, it monitors the safety and soundness of all banks, including Capitec Bank Limited (Capitec). –

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