CBN’s Resolve to Save Naira Fuels High Interest Rates

Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN)’s determination to ensure a stable exchange rate has ensured high interest rates. 
President Goodluck Jonathan has consistently reinstated the need for low interest rates for sustained economic development in recent times. Chief executives in the real sector has equally decried the negative impact of high interest rates on their businesses.
But the central bank in a bid to ensure stable exchange rates has increased foreign exchange supply from an average of $250 million dollars in week in January this year to $600 million dollars at the official market as at last week. The apex bank sometimes intervene directly with financial institutions if the pressure becomes too high.
The effort of the apex bank however yielded some result as the nation’s currency however appreciated against the United States dollar at the interbank market. But it was stable at the Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN’s) regulated Wholesale Dutch Auction System (WDAS).
For instance, at the interbank, the naira gained N2.12 to close at N161.95 to a dollar last Friday, compared to the N164.07 to a dollar it stood the preceding Friday. But at the WDAS, the naira maintained its value of N155.76 to a dollar. 
Nevertheless, at the BDC and parallel market points, the naira stood at N164.50 to a dollar and N165 to a dollar respectively.
And investigations show that most buyers of foreign exchange can only get to buy at the unofficial markets.
The naira weakened against the British Pound Sterling and Euros by 1.34 percent (or N3.27) and 0.83 percent (or N1.70) to close at N247 and N207.43 respectively.
“We expect sustained pressure on the naira/dollar exchange rate given downward trend in crude oil prices and external reserves,” analysts at Cowry Asset Management predicted.
The Nigerian Interbank Offered Rates (NIBOR) increased to an average of 21.67 percent last Friday, compared to the 19.08 percent it attained the preceding Friday due to the shortage of funds in the system.
According to dealers, the development in the short-term market for borrowing among commercial banks occurred as a result of the effects of auctioned foreign exchange worth N93.46 billion and federal government bond worth N70 billion issued by the Debt Management Office (DMO). This, they argued, drained liquidity from the system.
Specifically, data made available by the Financial Market Dealers Association (FMDA) showed that while the Call (Overnight) tenor increased to 23.58 percent last Friday, from 19 per cent the preceding Friday, the 7-day tenor jumped to 21.46 percent last Friday, as against the 19.29 percent it stood the preceding Friday.
Also, just as the 30-day tenor increased to 20.71 percent last Friday, from 19.54 percent the preceding Friday, the 60-day tenor stood at 21.10 per cent last Friday, from 19.67 percent. Similarly, the 90-day, 180-day and 365-day tenors all closed at 21.37 per cent, 21.87 per cent and 21.62 percent respectively.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *