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Emerging Market Governments Raise $129b Eurobond in H1 2018

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eurobond

By Dipo Olowookere

About $129 billion was raised from bond launches in the first half of 2018 by emerging market governments, Business Post has learnt.

Quoting UK-based Financial Times, analysts at FBNQuest Research, in their daily Good Morning Nigeria report of July 31, 2018 titled Eurobond market in good health, disclosed that more would still be likely raised before the end of this year.

Curiously, the average life of the new debt has increased by about seven years from last year while the rating has fallen.

The boost to the average life can be explained in part by the maiden 30-year Eurobonds issued by a number of African countries including Nigeria and Egypt.

In general, market conditions for issuance from Africa have been supported by the sanctions imposed on Russia, which is normally a prominent issuer in the sovereign and the corporate space.

According to FBNQuest Research, ratings downgrades notwithstanding, investors are in the hunt for yield, above all it would appear on longer dated issues.

Angola raised $1.25 billion from the sale of 30-year paper in April at 9.375 percent and reopened the issue earlier this month by selling a further $1.75 billion on more favourable terms.

More often, the terms for the borrower worsen on account of normalization and the downgrades. The question then becomes whether foreign currency issuance is still preferable to local. In this context it is significant that many EM central banks (such as Indonesia) have recently raised their policy rates.

Investors will generally expect a higher yield in this market environment, and will generally get it.

One way to sustain investor interest in a challenging market is to offer a new narrative. The reforms pledged by Abiy Ahmed, the Ethiopian prime minister appointed in April, amount to one such. The door is to be opened to foreign investment in telecoms, retail and perhaps financial services. Minority stakes in Ethiopian Airlines, one of the few profitable state-owned carriers, and Ethio Telecom would be marketable. For the latter, there is an obvious sub-regional buyer.

At the other end of the credit spectrum, we note reports from the wires that an unnamed Turkish company may refinance Zambia’s $750 million Eurobond maturing in 2022. The Zambian government is also looking to refinance some of its outstanding Chinese loans. Last week Moody’s downgraded Zambia to Caa1 (sub-speculative).

The report also noted that the normalization of US monetary policy has a lot further to run by all accounts. The latest increase in the Fed funds rate in June to a range of between 1.75 percent and 2 percent has brought real rates close to zero.

Consensus within the FOMC currently points to another two hikes this year, and three more in 2019. It has since been underpinned by a very strong GDP report for Q2 2018 (first estimate) as well as some gung-ho talk from the US Treasury secretary, Steve Mnuchin, about growth prospects in the two to three years ahead.

Dipo Olowookere is a journalist based in Nigeria that has passion for reporting business news stories. At his leisure time, he watches football and supports 3SC of Ibadan. Mr Olowookere can be reached via dipo.olowookere@businesspost.ng

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Economy

NNPC’ll Earn More Revenue—Kyari

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NNPC Dangote Refinery

By Adedapo Adesanya

The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC) is set to earn more revenue for the country as the federal government has positioned it to become the most capitalised company in Africa, says the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the company, Mr Mele Kyari.

This will happen as the central government has commenced full implementation of the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) in earnest.

Mr Kyari made this assertion while addressing staff in a town hall meeting at the weekend said the PIA had put “all money-making options on the table; it is up to us to take advantage of it”.

Highlighting the significance of the PIA to the NNPC and by extension the Nigerian economy, Mr Kyari said the new legislation has raised shareholders’ expectations on the company, even as it has given it wide room to make progress.

He said as a result of the new legislation, NNPC Limited would not only shed some of its toxic liabilities but will be the largest and most capitalised company in the whole of Africa and, potentially, the most profitable on the entire continent.

The CEO charged employees of the organisation to ensure that the company becomes a commercially viable entity and a multi-billion-dollar company that will continuously deliver value to its shareholders–the over two hundred million Nigerians.

Business Post had reported that President Muhammadu Buhari recently instituted the board of NNPC Limited led by Mrs Margery Chuba Okadigbo, Chairman, Mr Mele Kolo Kyari, Chief Executive Officer, Mr Umar I. Ajiya, Chief Financial Officer, Mr Tajudeen Umar (North East), Mrs Lami O. Ahmed (North Central), Mallam Mohammed Lawal (North West), Mr Henry Obih (South East), Barrister Constance Harry Marshal (South-South), and Mr Pius Akinyelure (South West).

Others included Mr Nasir Sani Gwarzo, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Petroleum Resources and Mr Aliyu Ahmed, Permanent Secretary, Minister, Finance, Budget and National Planning.

The President charged the board members to enforce the reforms put forward by the Petroleum Industry Act (PIA) 2021, which seeks to reposition the Nigerian petroleum industry to a commercially viable and competitive industry in line with global business dynamics and best practices.

“The Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited is mandated to focus on profitability and continuous value creation beyond the simple fulfilment of legal and regulatory requirements.

“NNPC Limited is expected to operate at par with its industry peers across the world while acting as Enabler Company that will foster the development of other sectors of our economy,” he said.

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Economy

Gains in NDEP, Nipco Push NASD Exchange 0.25% Higher

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NDEP

By Adedapo Adesanya

The week ended in the positive territory on the floor of the NASD Over-the-Counter (OTC) Securities Exchange following a 0.25 per cent rise on Friday, January 14.

The favourable outcome came on the back of gains recorded by the duo of Niger Delta Exploration and Production (NDEP) Plc and Nipco Plc.

NDEP Plc appreciated by N2.5 or 1.1 per cent during the session to close at N238.00 per unit as against N235.50 per unit it finished at the preceding session, while Nipco Plc improved by N6 or 8.7 per cent to close at N69.00 per unit compared with N63.00 per unit it closed at the previous session.

As a result of the good performances put up by the two stocks, the NASD unlisted security index (NSI) moved up by 1.86 points to 750.02 points from 748.16 points, while market capitalisation gained N1.58 billion to wrap the day at N635.10 billion in contrast to N633.52 billion it closed on Thursday.

There was no price loser during the trading day, through the trading volume slid by 36.9 per cent as a total of 207,618 units of shares exchanged hands compared with 329,347 units transacted on Thursday.

But the trading value rose by 15.6 per cent to N10.7 million from the previous day’s value of N9.3 million, while the number of deals depreciated by 36.4 per cent as only seven deals were carried out compared to the 11 deals executed at the previous session.

Central Securities Clearing Systems (CSCS) Plc remained as the most active stock by volume (year-to-date) as it has traded 1.02 million units of its shares for N19.9 million. Friesland Campina WAMCO Nigeria Plc was in second place for transacting 40,804 units of its stocks valued at N4.8 million, while NDEP Plc was in third place with 28,289 units valued at N6.7 million.

Also, CSCS Plc ended the session as the most traded stock by value with a turnover of 1.0 million units exchanged at N19.9 million, NDEP Plc trailed with 28,289 units worth N6.7 million, while Friesland Campina WAMCO Nigeria Plc has exchanged 40,804 units worth for N4.8 million.

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Economy

28.7% Drop in I&E Turnover Strengthens Naira to N416.00/$1

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Naira BDC Segment

By Adedapo Adesanya

The Naira closed the week stronger against the US Dollar at the Investors and Exporters (I&E) segment of the foreign exchange (forex) market on Friday, January 14.

At the I&E window, the local currency appreciated by 0.06 per cent or 50 kobo to trade at N416.00/$1 as against N416.50/$1 it closed on Thursday.

The strengthening of the local currency happened on the back of a 28.7 per cent or $49.59 million fall in turnover at the market segment as data obtained by Business Post from the FMDQ Securities Exchange showed that transactions worth $123.4 million were carried out compared with the $172.99 million recorded at the previous session.

However, at the interbank window of the market, the Naira recorded a flat outcome against the United States Dollar, closing at N414.79/$1, the same rate of the preceding day.

In the same vein, the domestic currency closed flat against the Pound Sterling on Friday at N565.57/£1 and against the Euro, the exchange rate of the indigenous currency remained intact at N475.22/€1.

Meanwhile, at the cryptocurrency market, six of the 10 digital currencies tracked by the newspaper across several trading platforms appreciated in value.

The highest gainer was Cardano (ADA) as it moved higher by 7.4 per cent to trade at N783.58, Tron (TRX) made a 3.8 per cent gain to sell at N40.46, Litecoin (LTC) improved by 3.5 per cent to trade at N82,485.74, Ripple (XRP) appreciated by 1.8 per cent to sell at N450, Binance Coin (BNB) rose by 0.7 per cent to trade at N205,719.75, while Dogecoin (DOGE) grew by 0.2 per cent to trade at N105.12.

However, Dash (DASH) went down by 1.6 per cent to sell for N80,050.10, Ethereum (ETH) depreciated by 0.5 per cent to sell at N1,896,100.03, the United States Dollar Tether moved down by 0.3 per cent to trade at N783.58, while Bitcoin (BTC) declined by 0.2 per cent to quote at N24,576,842.26.

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