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CBN devalues official rate of Naira to N381/$1

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The Central Bank of Nigeria has devalued the naira by 5.8% to N381 per dollar at the official market on Tuesday, as the apex bank took yet another step towards a uniformed exchange rates.

This was disclosed by data obtained from FMDQ OTC Securities Exchange on Tuesday.

The official rate which had been at N360/$ since March was quoted at N381/$ at market close on FMDQ, with analysts expecting the CBN to reflect the change on its website tomorrow.

It’s the second time the CBN has devalued the official rate this year following the crash in oil receipts, Nigeria’s major foreign exchange earner.

The CBN first devalued the official rate in March when it moved from N306/$, where it had been for over two years, to N360/$.

With the latest move, the CBN has collapsed the official rate with its special market intervention sales (SMIS) rate, bringing the country’s multiple rates to within three.

The SMIS rate was also devalued to N380/$ from N360/$ last Friday.

Unification of the multiple exchange rates is one of the requirements for Nigeria to assess a $2.5 billion World Bank loan and formed part of the promises made to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) before the disbursement of a $3.4 billion facility.

“Oil revenue in naira should get a minor boost,” from the devaluation of the official rate, said Omotola Abimbola, an analyst at Lagos-based Chapel Hill Denham.

What it means: Analysis shows that the move could add N70 billion to the amount made available to the three tiers of government via the monthly federal accounts allocation.

“Now, CBN has to unshackle the I&E window, and maybe we can put this FX liquidity problem behind us,” Abimbola said.

There has been a strong clamour for adopting a more market-friendly approach to managing Nigeria’s FX market and the latest development comes after the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, told some foreign investors that the desire of the central bank “is to achieve exchange rate unification” around the Nigerian Autonomous Foreign Exchange Market (NAFEX)/ I&E rate.

The I&E rate closed at N386/$ Tuesday.

There are however claims that the I&E rate is being rigged by the CBN as liquidity has long dried up in the market which was created in 2017 by the CBN to meet the dollar needs of investors and exporters.

“There’s no liquidity in the I&E window and that has redirected a lot of demand to the parallel market,” one trader said.

“Transactions of many manufacturers and businesses are now being priced at the parallel market rate,” the person said.

The naira trades much weaker at the parallel market at N460/$.

Emefiele however believes that the parallel market rate is being driven by speculators and illegal dealings and has so far discarded the rate as a measure of the naira’s market value.

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President Buhari suspends Twitter operations in Nigeria

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Federal Government has reportedly suspended, indefinitely, the operations of Twitter, the microblogging and social networking service, in Nigeria.

This was disclosed by the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, via a statement issued by the Ministry’s spokesperson, Segun Adeyemi on Friday.

The Minister cited the persistent use of the platform for activities that are capable of undermining Nigeria’s corporate existence.

“The Federal Government has also directed the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) to immediately commence the process of licensing all OTT and social media operations in Nigeria,” the statement read.

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How to assess FG’s Survival Fund

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The Federal Government has moved the website of its Survival Fund with effect from November 1, 2020.

This was disclosed by the Personal Assistant to President Muhammadu Buhari, Bashir Ahmad on behalf of the Ministry of Industry Trade and Investment via his Twitter handle on Saturday.

He tweeted, “The Ministry of Industry Trade and Investment wishes to inform the general public that due to operational challenges the Survival Fund website will be migrating with effect from tomorrow, Nov. 1st, 2020.”

What you should know
Last month, the Federal Government had commenced the disbursement of N30,000 one-time grant to 330,000 artisans across the country. The grant was launched across Lagos, Kano, Abuja and nine other states, as the first batch.

The grant, which is under the MSME Survival Fund, is part of the Nigerian Economic Sustainability Plan Initiated by the Federal Government on the 1st of July, 2020 to assist citizens and businesses operating in Nigeria.

To assess the website, click here

 

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N30,000 Survival Fund: Beneficiaries are receiving 1st batch- FG

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Beneficiaries in the first batch of the Federal Government’s N30,000 artisans’ grant have started receiving their grants.

This was disclosed by the Presidency via the FG’s Twitter handle on Saturday.

It tweeted, “The first batch of beneficiaries of the N30,000 artisans grant, a component of @NigeriaGov’s @SurvivalFund_ng, have started receiving their grants.

“Eligible beneficiaries are artisans and self-employed individuals. Each State will have 9,000 beneficiaries.”

 

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