Macroeconomic Report & Economic Updates

March 3, 2016

Nigeria Economic Update (Issue 10)

Nigerias inflation rate remained above
CBNs bandwidth of 6-9 per cent. Specifically, the inflation rate increased
slightly from 9.55 percent in December 2015 to 9.62 percent in January 20165.
The Core sub-index remains the main driver of inflation in Nigeria. The higher
prices of items in the Core sub-index such as clothing and foot wears are
reflective of higher domestic production costs as a result of the decline in the
value of the naira relative to the dollar. However, in the period, the price
increase was moderated by the stable price of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS). Going
forward, without any sustainable policy measure to prevent the further
depreciation of the naira, inflation may exceed the current single digit
inflation rate in the near term.

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Nigeria Economic Update (Issue 12)

The Naira sustained its appreciation trajectory at the parallel market in the review week. Precisely, naira gained 13.3 percent (Week-on-Week) to exchange at N390/$ on March 24, 2017. Reduced pressure on the naira followed moderation in speculative activities as a result of increased forex sales and intervention by the CBN (daily intervention of $1.5 million at the interbank market.) The aim of CBN interventions (narrowing the gap between interbank and parallel market rates) seems to be on course with the continued appreciation of the naira at alternative markets. While current approach of the apex bank proves effective in improving international value of naira in the short term, however, it is expedient that the bank articulates clear and credible flexible exchange rate policy to sustain the momentum and enhance confidence in the forex market in the medium term. Nonetheless, the sustainability of the exchange rate gains is partly dependent on the prospect of crude oil price and production which is outside the purview of the monetary authorities.

Nigeria Economic Update (Issue 2)

International rating body, Fitch, has projected higher economic growth for Nigeria in 2018. The body estimated that Nigerias economy will grow by 2.6 percent, slightly higher compared to projections from the International Monetary Fund (2.1 percent) and The World Bank (1 percent). A myriad of factors may have driven the projected increase: improved availability of forex for the non-oil sector, higher government capital expenditure capability driven by more oil revenue, and fiscal stimulus. However, the relatively strong economic growth projected by Fitch and IMF may be hampered

Nigeria Economic Update (Issue 9)

The naira depreciated by 8.2 percent from N305/$ on February 5th, to N330/ $ on February 12th 20166. The apex body identified the increased domestic demand for forex to pay for foreign medical treatments and schools fees (15 percent of total demand) 7 as the main drivers. As a result, the apex bank is considering to discontinue the provision of forex for payment of medical bills and school fees abroad and to re-channel the forex towards the manufacturing sector of the economy. With the continuous depreciation of the naira, and the CBNs resistance from calls to devalue the currency, the options for alternatives measures seem to be diminishing.

Nigeria Economic Update (Issue 24)

Crude oil price increased, in the week under review, to its highest price in 2016. Nigerias bonny light increased by $1.38 from $48.02 per barrel on May 20, 2016 to $49.64 per barrel on May 27, 2016, while Brent crude was sold for $50 per barrel on May 26, 2016. The catalyst for price gains in the period under review is the supply-side contractions, with unplanned production shortages in Nigeria, Canada and Iraq. The upward trend of prices may unlock more supplies in subsequent weeks, but the OPEC meeting scheduled for June 2, 2016, could moderate the effect. Nigeria is expected to benefit from crude oil price rising above the $38 per barrel benchmark. Unfortunately, supply disruptions continue to negatively affect oil revenue and may have contributed to the depletion of external reserve by over $153 millionthis week. The federal government, in collaboration with relevant security agencies, should find a lasting solution to the vandalism of oil pipelines and production facilities.