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CBN INCREASES FOREX MARKET BY $195M

CBN INCREASES FOREX MARKET BY $195M

CBN INCREASES FOREX MARKET BY $195M

PUAH OMOKHUALE

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Monday has boosted the FOREX market by issuing the sum of $195m to three segments of the market.

This was stated during an interview with the Acting Director, Corporate Communications Department, Mr. Isaac Okorafor, while responding to some media enquiries.

Mr. Okorafor stated that during this season, there are pressures on the market from those seeking forex for school fees and vacations, but the Bank has held on to its goal to ensure that there is a sustained liquidity in the market and that genuine requests for FOREX are met. This will help to improve liquidity and flexibility in the market.

According to Mr. Okorafor, the wholesale segment of the inter-bank Foreign Exchange market is auctioned $100m and also intervened in the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and invisible segments, with the sum of $50 million and $45million respectively.

This report came through the last week’s intervention in which the retail secondary market intervention sales (SMIS) received the largest allocation of $264,192,252.95 and the authorized dealers in the wholesale window had the sum of $100,000,000.

It was also stated that last week, the CBN, in an attempt to enhance foreign exchange availability in the Nigerian Forex Market and tolerable challenges encountered by critical stakeholders. It was yet stated that payment for port charges to the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) and other agencies by oil marketing companies would henceforth be accommodated by the Bank using Form ‘A’.

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Fx market traps naira to 480 per dollar

Fx market traps naira to 480 per dollar

FX MARKET TRAPS NAIRA TO 480 PER DOLLAR

BY OMOKHUALE PUAH

The Nigeria Currency, Naira has on Thursday pitched against the price of Dollar to a new record low of N480 per Dollar at against its previous price of N472 per dollar as at Wednesday.

A Dealer who sees the possibility in the soon fall of naira said in his words “dollar is very scarce in the market, because so many do not know the extent of its fall, in the near term. People tend to hold on to their hard currencies, in other to watch the direction of the market”.

Economic and financial analysts have linked the shortage in dollar to a wave of depreciation caused by a speculative attack on the naira and a high demand from companies and private individuals.

It was noted that after trading between N423 and N425 per dollar, for several weeks, the naira increased to N428 last Wednesday, which came a day after the Central Bank of Nigeria’s Monetary Policy committee retained the lending rate at 14 percent contrary to calls by the fiscal authority, economists and stakeholders.

Though analysts dismissed that the recent declines had links with the MPC's decision, which retained the lending rate at the current rate, but at the interbank market, on Thursday, the naira closed at 305.31/ dollar, up from 312.99 on Wednesday.

According to Gwadabe, the planned commencement of distribution of forex by Travelex could not hold due to some bottlenecks.

He said that Travelex, an international money transfer organization, ought to have begun the Forex distribution to the BDC operators on Monday, but was postponed to Wednesday which still did not hold.

Following the words of ABCON leader, the sale of forex to the BDC operators by Travevelex, would help to stem the tide of volatility in the exchange rate and subsequently close the gap between the official and parallel market rates.

Saying that the latest decline in the naira was as a result of the activities of speculators, He added that Travelex has the technology to sell Forex to about 1,000 BDCs in a couple of hours, which is a major advantage.

Mr. Kunle Ezun, a currency analyst at the Ecobank Nigeria, said in his words “these rising exchange rate currently at the parallel market, are not realistic, because it has to do with speculators.

“The fact that there is an acute and chronic shortage of forex cannot be over ruled, for there is a genuine demand which the supply cannot match, because inflows have dropped significantly”, Mr. Kunle added.

Gwadagbe further said “several sharp practices have been ongoing in the forex market and these elements want to continue making profits from the status quo, which is why it is speculating against the naira”.

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CBN BANS FOREX MARKET

CBN BANS FOREX MARKET

CBN BANS NINE BANKS FROM FOREX MARKET

By: OMOKHUAL PUAH

Central bank of Nigeria (CBN) has on Tuesday barred nine banks from the Forex Trading Market, for refusing to remit a total of $2.334 billion to Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) from the Treasury Single Account (TSA).

In a briefing with the Nigeria President Muhammadu Buhari, each of the nine affected banks have been mandated to move their monies into the TSA as they await the prospects of further fines.

In a report by THISDAY Tuesday afternoon, the nine suspended banks include the United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc – $530 million, First Bank of Nigeria (FBN) Ltd. – $469 million, Diamond Bank Plc – $287 million, Sterling Bank Plc – $269 million, Skye Bank Plc -$221 million, Fidelity Bank Plc – $209 million, Keystone Bank Ltd. – $139 million, First City Monument Bank (FCMB) Ltd. – $125 million, and Heritage Bank Limited – $85.5 million.

The suspension which started after CBN restricted the flow of dollars to commercial banks in March has forced the banks to delay hard-currency loan and trade repayments and increased their risk of default.

In the words of Diran Olojo, a spokesman for First City Monument Bank (FCMB), “it is the problem of dire macroeconomic situation and illiquidity in the forex markets, not a willful non- compliance by the banks and the banks are working hard with the CBN to resolve the issue”.

In an appeal made by the executives of the affected banks, it was stated that “the remittances were delayed by the dollar illiquidity of the Nigerian system and so, the CBN should sell us the dollars, by debiting our various accounts so that we could return the monies to the TSA”.

The executives further pleaded that the CBN gives them more time to refund the huge amounts, because “a large amount of the funds were loaned to the power sector, oil sector and the gas sector. Since the most amount was issued to the international oil companies (IOCs) to patch up the government failures in terms of arrears, the government should try to fund its cash calls obligations, so that the IOCs will be able to refund us and in turn remit the TSA”.

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