Macroeconomic Report & Economic Updates

August 19, 2016

Nigeria Economic Update (Issue 35)

Recent report in the media highlights that Nigerias
GDP has dropped to $296 billion in 2016, in contrast to the $481 billion
recorded in 20151 and Nigeria has lost its position as Africas
largest economy to South Africa. This conclusion was based on the computation
of GDP with current naira-dollar exchange rate. However, while the naira has
significantly lost its official value since the adoption of a flexible exchange
rate, estimating GDP merely with a single exchange rate figure (rather than its
yearly average) cannot be regarded as an appropriate method to conclude on Africas
largest economy.

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Nigeria Economic Update (Issue 1)

Nigerias external reserves improved in 2017. The reserve stood at approximately $39 billion as at the end of December 2017, up by about 50 percent from the $26 billion at the beginning of the year 20172. The surge in reserve was particularly boosted by increased capital importation, and crude revenue earnings prompted by a relatively higher crude oil price and improved domestic production. Given that the recent uptick in external reserves is still largely associated with improved crude oil price, efforts should be geared towards conserving current reserve gain so as to cushion future external shock. In the medium term, there is need to diversify export earning away from oil so as to mitigate the effects of volatility in crude oil prices.

Nigeria Economic Update (Issue 1)

The external reserve increased week-on-week by 2 percent to $26.3 billion on January 6, 2017. The increase was likely triggered by continued marginal rise in crude oil price, which moderated oil revenue in the review week. The recent rise in crude oil price is likely to be maintained in the short term given the recent oil production cut deal by OPEC members. Thus, the Nigerian government should target short term increase in crude oil production to fully take advantage of Nigerias exemption from oil production cut and potential rise in oil prices.

Nigeria Economic Update (Issue 12)

The naira/dollar exchange rate remained largely stable at the parallel market at ?320/$ during the period7, albeit slight fluctuations on February 29, 2016 (?325/$) and March 2, 2016 (?328/$). The decline in the hoarding of foreign currency as well as the substantial reduction in the speculative demand for dollars were the two key factors responsible for the ease of fluctuations in the forex market8. With the slight increase in the price of crude oil, Nigerias foreign reserve slightly grew by $56 million, from 27.81 billion to $27.84 billion9. With the continued increase in the price of crude oil, a modest build-up of foreign reserve to guard against unfavourable commodity price movements is expected in the near term.