Exchange rate gains at the NAFEX window as CBN moves to boost dollar liquidity

The Naira remained stable against the dollar to close at N477/$1 on Thursday at the black market.

Nigeria’s exchange rate at the NAFEX window appreciated closing at N385.75 during intraday trading on Thursday, August 27, 2020. In another development, the exchange rate at the parallel market still remained stable on Thursday as it closed at N477/$1.

Forex Turnover: Forex turnover at the Investor and Exporters (I&E) window increased substantially by 198.3% on Thursday, August 27, 2020, after the drop that was recorded the previous trading day.

  • Forex turnover rose from $14.47 million on Wednesday, August 26, 2020, to $43.16 million on Thursday, August 27, 2020.
  • The increase is coming a day after the previous trading day drop in forex turnover following scarcity of dollars.
  • This reinforces the continued volatility of the foreign exchange market and the scarcity of the greenback. The supply of dollars has been on a decline for months due to low oil prices and the absence of foreign capital inflow into the country.
  • The average daily forex sale for last week was about $71.13 million which represents a significant increase from the $24 million that was recorded the previous week. The day’s FX turnover is still a far cry from the $200 million mark that was recorded sometime last week.
  • Total forex trading at the NAFEX window in the month of July was $937 million compared to $875 million in June.
  • The exchange rate disparity between the official NAFEX rate and the black-market rate has remained as wide as N91.25. Nigeria maintains multiple exchange rates comprising the CBN official rate, the BDC rates, SMIS, and the NAFEX (I&E window). The wide disparity between the 2 rates has created huge arbitrage opportunities for some highly connected individuals.

Market Watch

Parallel Market: At the black market where forex is traded unofficially, the Naira remained stable against the dollar to close at N477/$1 on Thursday, according to information from Abokifx, a prominent FX tracking website. This was the same rate that it exchanged on Wednesday, August 26.

NAFEX: The Naira appreciated against the dollar at the Investors and Exporters (I&E) window on Thursday, closing at N385.75/$1.

  • This represents a 25 kobo gain when compared to the N386/$1 that it exchanged the previous trading day, Wednesday, August 26, 2020.
  • The opening indicative rate was N386.15 to a dollar on Thursday. This represents a 5 kobo gain when compared to the N386.20 to a dollar that was recorded on Wednesday.
  • The N393.05 to a dollar is the highest rate during intraday trading before closing at N385.75. It also sold for as low as N380/$1 during intraday trading.

Forex is sold at several prices and at different times during the day.

The central bank moved towards exchange rate unification three weeks ago after it devalued the official rate to N380/$1.

Despite the volatility and scarcity of foreign exchange, the naira appears stable across the forex markets. The dollar shortage has forced banks to reduce drastically the dollar spending limits on their debit cards.

The local currency has remained stable for some days as the Central Bank of Nigeria had introduced some measures targeted at exporters and importers in order to try to boost the supply of dollars in the foreign exchange market and reduce the high demand for forex by traders.

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