Non-deliverable forwards see naira lose fifth of its value in 365 days

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Non-deliverable forwards see the naira losing a fifth of its value over the next 12 months after the Central Bank of Nigeria, (CBN) devalued the naira at one of its currency auctions, according to people familiar with the matter.

Nigeria’s naira eased 5.5% on the official market on Tuesday, after the central bank sold dollars to lenders at a lower rate, bowing to pressure from international lenders to unify its multiple exchange rates.

Nigeria has been under pressure from lenders such as the World Bank and International Monetary Fund to merge its exchange rates. The World Bank is expected to approve a $3 billion budget support loan for Nigeria in the coming months.

Finance Minister Zainab Ahmed has also pushed for uniform rates to generate more naira from Nigeria’s crude receipts.

The latest moves in the currency are the second adjustment in six months. In March, the bank devalued the official rate by 15%.

On Tuesday, the naira eased to 380.50 in off-market trades, from 360.50 close on Monday, traders said.

No quotes for the naira were available on the official market during regular trading for the second straight session, Refinitiv Eikon data showed, after the central bank last week depreciated the currency at an auction.

The central bank, Nigeria’s main forex supplier, asked lenders on Friday to bid for dollars at 380 naira per dollar, 5.3% above its official rate.

The naira traded at 387.70 on the over-the-counter spot market, widely used by investors and importers, while it was quoted weaker at 460 on the black market.

Nigeria has offered multiple foreign-exchange rates, which it imposed to manage dollar demand after oil prices crashed. But dollar shortages have followed, stifling growth.

The currency has come under pressure in recent months after the coronavirus pandemic and a fall in the price of oil, which caused the gap between the spot and black markets to widen.

Central Bank Governor Godwin Emefiele has said he would not unify rates close to the black market level.

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Samson Gbenga Salau [Editorial Board Adviser] Gbenga Samuel Salau is a professional journalist with over 17 years experience in journalism, he is a graduate of Communication and Language Arts, University of Ibadan. On completion of his youth service, he joined The Guardian as a freelance journalist and was later absorbed as a staff. While in the University, he was a campus journalist reporting for the Independence Hall and Faculty of Arts Press Clubs. As a campus journalist, he won the following awards; Independence Hall Press Best News writer; University of Ibadan Union of Campus Journalists’ Best News Reporter/Writer; First Runner-up, Reuben Abati Award for Investigative Journalism; Association of Faculty of Arts Students’ Press Best Reporter; University of Ibadan Union of Campus Journalists’ Best Political Writer; Winner, Reuben Abati Award for Investigative Journalism, and University of Ibadan Union of Campus Journalists’ Best Interviewer. He served the Association of Communication and Language Arts Students, as the Public Relation Officer, the same year he was appointed the News Editor of the Association of Faculty of Arts Students Press. The following session, he was made the General Editor, and a member of the 13-man University of Ibadan Students’ Union Transition Committee. As a reporter in The Guardian, in 2014, he won the Promasidor Quill Award Best Report on Nutrition and DAME Business Reporting category. In the 2015 edition of the Promasidor Quill Award, he won the best Report on Nutrition and Brand Advocate Categories, while in 2016, he won the NMMA Print Journalist of the Year, first runner-up Golden Pen Reporter of the Year and SERAs CSR Awards. Gbenga Salau loves traveling, reading, and listening to songs with good lyrics no matter the genre.

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