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Economy

Portfolio Investors Will Dump Naira Assets in 2022 Unless…LCCI

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foreign portfolio investors

By Adedapo Adesanya

The Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) has projected that Naira assets will become unattractive in 2022 and will result in portfolio investors dumping them.

President of the chamber, Mr Michael Olawale-Cole, while speaking on Tuesday at the organisation’s first press conference for the year in Lagos, stated that investors will have a change of mind if there is an improvement in the yield environment and the issues in the foreign exchange (FX) ecosystem are addressed.

He, therefore, called on the monetary authorities to liberalize the FX market by unifying the multiple forex rates and ensuring they are market-driven, noting that this was critical in the process of enhancing stability, liquidity, and transparency in the FX market.

“The unification is expected to improve the country’s currency management framework given that the multiple exchange rate systems had been creating uncertainty issues and sources of arbitrage,” he said.

Mr Olawale-Cole also stressed the need for a greater investment-friendly disposition of the government towards enhancing the quality of Nigeria’s trade infrastructure and better border management.

As regards the country’s headline inflation, he said it is expected to remain elevated in 2022 amid the forex crisis and increasing debt portfolio, but stressed that better management will improve economical outcomes.

He noted that high prices remained a major concern for businesses and households, especially given the challenges associated with insecurity, infrastructure deficit, and foreign exchange fluctuations.

The LCCI chief projected headline inflation to remain elevated as the combination of food supply shocks, FX policies and illiquidity, higher energy costs, heightened insecurity continue to mount pressure on domestic consumer prices.

“Inflation at 15.4 per cent as of November 2021 remains elevated and portends serious implications for various economic agents, including households, businesses and investors.

“An inflationary environment erodes consumers’ real disposable income, weakens purchasing power, escalates production cost, worsens cost of living, dampens corporate profitability, and undermines investor confidence.

“The collaborative effort of the fiscal and monetary policymakers is required in addressing the structural constraints fuelling inflationary pressure.

“Addressing the security crisis across the country is not only highly imperative but also very urgent,” he said.

The LCCI President also anticipated Nigeria’s debt stock and debt-servicing to revenue ratio to remain elevated in 2022.

He said that the low yield environment was expected to keep domestic borrowings elevated in the short term as it favoured the Federal Government in mobilising funds at lower rates.

“An overview of the recently passed 2022 budget of N17.13 trillion puts the deficit at N6.25 trillion, recurrent and capital expenditure at N6.83 trillion and N5.35 trillion, which represent 41.7 and 32.6 per cent of total expenditure, while 25.7 per cent will be used for debt servicing and repayment of maturing bonds.

“Putting all these into consideration, we see total debt stock within the range of N39 trillion and N40 trillion by year-end 2021.

“With projected borrowings of N4.893 trillion, N4.750 trillion, and N5.356 trillion in 2022, 2023, and 2024 respectively, debt sustainability concerns will remain elevated,” he said.

Adedapo Adesanya is a journalist, polymath, and connoisseur of everything art. When he is not writing, he has his nose buried in one of the many books or articles he has bookmarked or simply listening to good music with a bottle of beer or wine. He supports the greatest club in the world, Manchester United F.C.

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Economy

Domestic Market Loses 0.06% on Profit-taking in 26 Stocks

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profit-taking at NSE

By Dipo Olowookere

Profit-taking in 26 stocks on Monday opened the doors of the Nigerian Exchange (NGX) Limited wide open to the bears, causing the domestic market to lose 0.06 per cent.

All but one of the key sectors of the market closed bearish yesterday and this was the energy counter, which appreciated by 1.67 per cent, while the insurance, banking, consumer goods and industrial goods sectors declined by 1.44 per cent, 0.45 per cent, 0.23 per cent and 0.01 per cent respectively.

Consequently, the All-Share Index (ASI) was reduced by 29.08 points to 45,928.27 points from 45,957.35 points, while the market capitalisation fell by N12 billion to N24.749 trillion from N24.761 trillion.

Regency Assurance was the worst-performing stock yesterday as its value went down by 9.52 per cent to 38 kobo, followed by FTN Cocoa, which dropped 7.69 per cent to 36 kobo.

NEM Insurance declined by 5.41 per cent to N3.50, Sovereign Trust Insurance lost 4.17 per cent to trade at 23 kobo, while Cutix depreciated by 4.00 per cent to N2.40.

Business Post reports that the exchange closed with 15 price gainers on Monday led by Livingtrust Insurance, which appreciated by 9.62 per cent to quote at N1.14.

Northern Nigerian Flour Mills grew by 9.49 per cent to N8.65, Academy Press improved by 9.09 per cent to 72 kobo, Courtville rose by 8.70 per cent to 50 kobo, while ABC Transport gained 5.88 per cent to trade at 36 kobo.

Yesterday, Chams was the busiest stock, trading 40.6 million units valued at N8.1 million and was trailed by UBA, which exchanged 35.1 million units worth N284.7 million.

Courtville traded 33.3 million units for N16.6 million, Sterling Bank sold 18.8 million units valued at N30.1 million, while Access Bank transacted 17.1 million units worth N166.4 million.

At the close of transactions, the volume of shares traded by investors went down by 1.06 per cent to 278.6 million units from 281.6 million units. The value, however, increased by 19.71 per cent to N2.9 billion from N2.4 billion, while the number of deals rose by 18.94 per cent to 4,447 deals from 3,739 deals.

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Economy

Friesland, CSCS Leave NASD Bourse Bleeding After N8.23bn Loss

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Friesland WAMCO

By Adedapo Adesanya

The NASD Over-the-Counter (OTC) started the week on a negative note after it bled by 1.3 per cent on Monday as a result of profit-taking, especially in the shares of FrieslandCampina WAMCO Nigeria Plc and Central Securities Clearing Systems (CSCS) Plc.

The Peak Milk maker lost N3.3 or 2.9 per cent yesterday to trade at N115.00 per share compared with the previous N118.30 per share, while the Nigerian depository company depreciated by N1.00 or 5.4 per cent to quote at N18.38 per unit as against the preceding session’s value of N19.38 per unit.

The losses posted by the duo decreased the market capitalisation of the bourse by N8.23 billion to N622.23 billion from N630.46 billion and weakened the NASD Unlisted Securities Index (NSI) by 9.71 points to wrap the session at 734.83 points compared with 744.54 points recorded at the previous session.

Unfortunately, the market did not record a price gainer yesterday, but the volume of securities traded at the bourse by investors went down by 97.3 per cent to 111,347 units from the 4.1 million units achieved last Friday.

In the same vein, the value of shares that exchanged hands during the trading day depleted by 94.5 per cent to N4.8 million from N86.9 million, while the number of deals executed by traders depreciated by 12.5 per cent to seven deals from the eight deals carried out at the preceding session.

At the close of business, CSCS Plc maintained its position as the most traded security by volume on a year-to-date basis with 653.7 million units of its shares sold for N13.7 billion. VFD Group Plc came next with 916,161 units valued at N331.5 million, while Friesland Campina WAMCO Nigeria Plc has so far traded 233,766 units valued at N27.5 million.

Also, CSCS Plc ended the day as the most traded stock by value on a year-to-date basis with the sale of 653.7 million units worth N13.7 billion. VFD Group Plc also came next with 916,161 units worth N331.5 million, while Friesland Campina WAMCO Nigeria Plc trailed with 233,766 units worth N27.5 million.

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Economy

Bitcoin, Ethereum, Others Appreciate amid Renewed Interest

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Ethereum

By Adedapo Adesanya

Renewed interest in cryptocurrency helped the market regain its feet on Monday after last week’s scare, which forced investors to offload the digital assets.

The selloff witnessed lately was triggered by fears that the United States Federal Reserve would come up with a tighter monetary policy this week.

But yesterday, the market was calm as seven of the 10 tokens monitored by Business Post across the various trading platforms closed positive, with Bitcoin (BTC) gaining 5.9 per cent to close at N21,279,581.03.

Litecoin (LTC) appreciated by 2.9 per cent to sell at N64,092.87, Ethereum (ETH) made a 1.8 per cent appreciation to close at N1,421,449.49, while US Dollar Tether (USDT) improved by 1.5 per cent to sell for N586.56.

In addition, Ripple (XRP) appreciated by 0.6 per cent to close at N352.24, Dogecoin (DOGE) rose by 0.3 per cent to quote at N81.59, while Binance Coin (BNB) recorded a gain of 0.1 per cent to trade at N154,299.88.

On the other hand, Dash (DASH) fell by 3.7 per cent to trade at N52,686.71, Tron (TRX) depreciated by 3.2 per cent to sell at N31.35, while Cardano (ADA) depleted by 1.1 per cent to close at N630.39.

Meanwhile, at the Investors and Exporters (I&E) segment of the foreign exchange (FX) market in Nigeria, the Naira traded bearish on the first day of this week, losing 0.09 per cent or 38 kobo to trade exchange against the Dollar at N416.38/$1 compared with the preceding session’s rate of N416/$1.

This occurred amid a decline in the demand for forex at the market window, with the turnover for the day at $136.9 million, 3.8 per cent or $5.5 million lower than the $142.42 million recorded last Friday.

Also, the domestic currency suffered a loss of 11 kobo against the greenback at the interbank segment of the market, trading at N415.53/$1 at the close of business on Monday compared with N415.53/$1 of the previous session.

But against the Pound Sterling, the Naira appreciated by N2.69 yesterday to close at N560.69/£1 in contrast to the previous N563.38/£1, while against the Euro, the local currency gained 88 kobo to close at N470/€1 versus last Friday’s N470.88/€1.

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