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Markets

Nigeria naira drops to record intra-day low on spot market

  • It traded at 480 naira on the black market on Monday, 20% weaker than the official rate of 381 naira set in July and backed by the central bank.
Published February 2, 2021
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ABUJA: The Nigerian naira fell to a record intra-day low of 415.95 per dollar on the spot market on Monday after easing on the derivatives market, traders said.

The futures market for five-year settlement dropped to a record low of 613.69 naira per dollar while the futures contract with three weeks to maturity fell to 405.13 per dollar, close to where the two-month forwards quoted the currency.

Dollar demand has been growing, putting pressure on the naira.

Importers with past due obligations have scrambled for hard currency while providers of foreign exchange, such as offshore investors, have exited.

Traders said the central bank has yet to resume dollar sales this year to foreign investors seeking to repatriate funds and that the bank did not sell forex to companies last week.

The naira, which was devalued twice last year on the official market, lost 11.2% on the over-the-counter spot market in 2020.

It traded at 480 naira on the black market on Monday, 20% weaker than the official rate of 381 naira set in July and backed by the central bank.

Analysts say the naira is around 15% over-valued, citing the 12-month forward quote of 459 naira to the dollar.

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