Do it for the sake of diversity
Yes, you can buy shares in our Reserve Bank, an oddity but a reality. There are 2m shares available for investors, with a tranche of 149 000 recently becoming available to buy.
Sounds crazy, but don’t think you’ll get to set policy and decide on interest rates. To be honest, it isn’t a great investment either. The dividend is fixed at 10c a year and your only other right as a shareholder is to attend the annual general meeting (AGM). If you own at least 200 shares you can vote for non-executive directors.
So why buy them? I think it’s a great idea to diversify the shareholder base to as wide a grouping of South Africans as possible. Further, the Reserve Bank building in Pretoria is truly amazing and we’d get the annual invite to the AGM where we may get to take a selfie with the governor.
The shares are traded over the counter via the Reserve Bank’s website and are pretty much 100% illiquid. It is no investment, but I’ll be putting a few hundred rand into some shares.