Naira Crashes to N752/$1 at Black Market
By Dipo Olowookere
The Naira crashed to N752/$1 on Friday afternoon at the black market segment of the foreign exchange (forex) market as customers continued to hedge against the devaluation of the local currency.
The significant demand for Dollars and the scarcity of foreign currency weakened the Nigerian currency today at the exchange market.
In the previous day, the exchange rate of the domestic currency to the greenback was N747/$1, but as customers were unable to get FX from the banks, the forex hawkers raised the rate to N752/$1, indicating a decline of N5 or 0.67 per cent in less than 24 hours.
Since the political scene heated up earlier this year with presidential primaries, the Naira has been in trouble as politicians mopped up Dollars from the financial system to woo delegates for presidential slots.
The lifting of the embargo on campaigns has further worsened the situation as FX users have found it difficult to access forex from commercial banks despite the assurances given by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
“The situation will continue for a long time unless urgent action is taken to boost the country’s FX earnings,” a financial analyst, Mr Sakiru Adediran, told Business Post.
“It is very difficult to get Dollars from the banks nowadays. This is why we are very careful selling the few with us. In fact, some of us are beginning to leave the forex market to trade gold, which is more profitable than currency exchange,” an FX trader in the Egbeda area of Lagos, Mr Salisu Yisa, informed this newspaper.