As expected, the Monetary Policy Committee left the policy interest rate (MPR) and other parameters unchanged. At 14 percent, the MPR has been left unchanged for the 10th consecutive period1; likewise the CRR at 22.5 percent, Liquidity Ratio at 30.0 percent; and Asymmetric corridor at +200 and -500 basis points around the MPR. All except one member of the MPC agreed to keep rates on hold, mainly in anticipation of a more precise direction of key macroeconomic indicators, including the passage and implementation of the 2018 budget. Complementary factors considered for the hold also points to the current moderation in inflation rate towards single digit, as well as higher reserve levels
Macroeconomic Report & Economic Updates
Recently released survey report by the CBN shows an improvement in the availability of secured and unsecured banks credit and loans to households, corporate and small businesses in 2017Q3, and an optimistic outlook in 2017Q4. Among other indices, availability of overall secured and unsecured lending to households improved from -6.2 and -19.2 to -0.9 and -15.0 index points respectively; although still in the negative territory. Index for availability of credit to small businesses improved from -20.1 to -6.7. Lenders and respondents noted that anticipation of a brighter economic outlook, favorable liquidity positions, market share objectives and higher appetite for risk were major factors behind the increase.
Crude oil prices fluctuated during the review week. OPEC weekly basket price decreased marginally from $53.63 on February 24, 2017 to $53.34 on March 3, 2017. Similarly, Brent crude declined (week-on-week) by 0.84 percent to $55.15, while Bonny light decreased by 2.4 percent to $54.4 per barrel. During the week, reports of Russias incomplete compliance to agreed production cut and rising United States crude production/inventories, led to the slight pressure exerted on oil prices. The uncertainties and volatility of global crude oil price stresses the need for the government to channel efforts at developing other key sectors of the economy, particularly the manufacturing sector.
Power sector statistics indicates a huge decline in power generated in the week under review (June 23, 2017 to June 30, 2017). Power generated, attained a peak of 4,305 MW on June 23, 2017 but fell significantly by 33.1 percent to approximately average of 3,000 MW as at June 30, 2017. The huge decline is attributable to continued poor payment and inability of most GENCOs to pay for gas supply and a system collapse. Consequently, power sector lost huge prospective funds; and daily power supply reduced to 4.5 hours per day7. Going forward, improvement in energy supply is critical to domestic production, job creation, and diversification agenda of the government.
This study investigates the effects of merchandise trade and investment flows on the transmission of business cycles between members of ECOWAS and the major trading partnersbetween 1985 and 2014. Total trade and FDI significantly influence the transmission of business cycles with elasticities of 1.1% and 0.7%, respectively in the long run. There are little variations across the major trading partners and other measures of trade flows. Intra-industry trade flows with all partners, EU and USA influences the cross-country business cycles with elasticities of 1.0%, 0.5% and 1.8%, respectively.