Alarm as Naira slumps to N1089/$ on official I&E window

This is the fourth time the naira will close below N1,000 on the official window.

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Alarm, Naira slumps to N1089/$, on official I&E windowNigeria’s currency, the Naira fell to N1089.51/$ on the official Investor and Exporter window on Tuesday.

The currency fell by 27.19 percent from the N856.57/$ it closed on Monday, according to data from the FMDQ Securities Exchange.

During Tuesday’s trading, willing buyers and sellers quoted the dollar at N1,251, representing the highest bid rate, and at N720/$, the lowest spot rate. The daily FX market turnover witnessed a 63.34 per cent surge to $97.45 million on Tuesday, compared to the $59.66 million recorded the day before.

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Total forex turnover on the day was $97.45m. This is the fourth time the naira will close below N1,000 on the official window.

On December 8, 2023, the naira fell to an all-time low of N1,099.05/$, on December 28, 2023, it closed trading at N1043.09/$, on January 3, 2024, the national currency closed at N1035.12/$.

Tuesday’s N1089.51/$ is the second lowest the naira has closed on the official FX window since the Central Bank of Nigeria removed the rate cap of the currency.

The naira’s continued decline is despite the apex bank’s effort to clear backlogs of matured foreign exchange obligations to the Deposit Money Banks. Recently, the CBN stated that it has paid $2bn as part of its backlog obligations.

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Reports estimate that the bank is owing $7bn as forward contract obligations. The CBN disclosed this when it revealed it has disbursed $61.64m to foreign airlines as part of matured foreign exchange owed to them.

The CBN Acting Director of Corporate Communications, Hakama  Alia, said, “These payments signify the CBN’s ongoing efforts to settle all remaining valid forward transactions, to alleviate the current pressure on the country’s exchange rate.

“It is anticipated that this initiative by the CBN should provide a considerable boost to the Naira hug against other major world currencies and further increase investor confidence in the Nigeria economy.”

Also, this current depreciation of the naira against the dollar is in the face of the government’s renewed effort to boost liquidity in the foreign exchange market.

At the end of 2023, the Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister of Economy, Wale Edun disclosed that the Federal Government had received a $2.25bn foreign exchange support facility from the African Import-Export Bank.

According to the minister, the first tranche of its $3.3bn facility from the bank is aimed at resolving FX shortages in the economy.

 

Credit: The Punch