Currency Watch

Naira falls again as Senate endorses CBN FX policies

by HOPE MOSES-ASHIKE and OWEDE AGBAJILEKE, Abuja

January 20, 2016 | 9:35 am
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Members of the Senate on Tuesday commended and supported the foreign exchange (FX) policies of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), as they were mostly geared towards increasing local production, creating jobs, safeguarding the nation’s commonwealth and expanding economic opportunities and growth.

This is coming after Godwin Emefiele, CBN’s governor, was questioned by the senators for over two hours behind closed doors on the fall in FX reserves, exclusion of some items from access to FX as well as policy coordination between fiscal and monetary authorities.

Emefiele, who declined interview with journalists after the session, was quoted as saying that Nigeria was not doing badly when compared with her peers in other parts of the world.

But the naira on Tuesday depreciated significantly against the dollar across FX markets, as a result of shortage of the greenback.

Naira weakened against the dollar by N2 or 0.68 percent each at the Bureau De Change (BDC) segment of the FX market and the parallel market.

After trading yesterday, the local currency closed at N296/$ compared with N294/$ the previous day at the BDC segment. It closed at N298/$ as against N296/$ traded the previous day at the parallel market.

At the inter-bank market, it dropped by N1.81k or 0.92 percent against dollar as it closed at N199.35k/$ on Tuesday from N197.54k/$ on Monday.

However, the CBN’s clearing rate remained unchanged, closing at N197.00k/$ at the inter-bank FX as seen on FMDQ website.

Chairman, Senate Committee on Media and Publicity, Aliyu Sabi Abdullahi, said the CBN governor presented a ‘detailed, comprehensive and lucid account of the performance of the economy in the last one year.’

According to Abdullahi, Emefiele’s presentation “began with the current global economic conditions, which have been characterised by external shocks, including the sharp decline in commodity prices, the geographical tensions along important global trading routes and tightening of monetary policy in the US.”

The Senate spokesman said the CBN governor drew linkages of these occurrences with the Nigerian economy, especially with respect to the over 70 percent decline in oil prices from about $116 per barrel in June 2014 to about $30 per barrel currently.

“The governor’s presentation also gave us an insight into the bank’s analysis and understanding of the situation, and therefore, the rationale underlying the countervailing policy actions it has taken over the last couple of months,” he said.


by HOPE MOSES-ASHIKE and OWEDE AGBAJILEKE, Abuja

January 20, 2016 | 9:35 am
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