A month after the collapse of Steinhoff and the emergence of Viceroy, South African capital markets have taken another hit when Viceroy released its report on Capitec Bank. The report — titled A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing — reaches the conclusion that Capitec is a "glorified loan shark masquerading as a community microfinance provider". This is based on Viceroy’s analysis of publicly available data and a variety of assumptions. Viceroy’s obscure profile notwithstanding, we know that it has a short position on Capitec and stood to make profits if the share price of Capitec fell. As soon as the report was released, Capitec’s share went into decline. The condemnation for Viceroy has been widespread as some have accused it of market manipulation. PSG — the anchor shareholder in Capitec — has called for a probe into Viceroy’s true motives. At the heart of the debate is whether an entity like Viceroy should be in a position to issue a report that could trigger a run on an entire bank, which...

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