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Economy

Australian Unemployment Rate Unchanged in April

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Australian Unemployment rate

The Australian unemployment rate remains at a 2 1/2 year low in April, boosted by an increase in the number of part-time jobs.

  • Unemployment was unchanged at 5.7%; economists predicted 5.8%
  • Employment rose 10,800 from March; economists forecast 12,000 gain
  • Full-time jobs fell by 9,300; part-time employment rose by 20,200
  • Participation rate, a measure of labor force as a share of the population, dropped to 64.8%; economists predicted 64.9%.

The report signals that record-low interest rates are aiding a revival in industries like construction, tourism and education that’s helping soak up unemployed workers as a resource boom winds down. The second straight month of jobs growth also provides a boon for a government seeking to push its economic credentials ahead of a July 2 election. Still, wage growth is stagnant and the investment outlook remains weak.

Thursday’s data “are unlikely to prompt the Reserve Bank of Australia to follow May’s rate cut with another reduction at the next meeting in June,” said Paul Dales, an economist at Capital Economics in Sydney.

The Australian dollar fell slightly after the report, buying 72.19 U.S. cents at 12.04 p.m. in Sydney compared with 72.30 cents before the data.

Full-time positions fell for the second consecutive month, while part-time roles have increased over the same period. While job creation is steady, the year has started slowly compared to the last quarter of 2015, when the nation added the most jobs on record.

The RBA this week said that data suggested employment would continue to grow, albeit at a somewhat slower pace than over the previous year, in minutes of its May board meeting. For now, stubbornly low inflation is the central bank’s bigger concern.

“The RBA’s near-term outlook for rates is now tied to the inflation outlook which has been lowered based on the weak first-quarter CPI read and subdued inflationary pressures,” Tapas Strickland, economist at National Australia Bank Ltd. in Sydney, said before Thursday’s report. “This will likely lower the emphasis the RBA places on near- term activity indicators, unless such indicators were to print markedly weaker than expected.”

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

Economy

Nigeria Receives £4.2 Million Looted By James Ibori

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James Ibori

The government of the United Kingdom has repatriated the sum of £4.2million that was looted by associates and family members of the convicted former governor of Delta State, James Ibori.

The Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr. Abubakar Malami, SAN, on Tuesday confirmed the receipt of the looted fund in a statement he made available to newsmen in Abuja.

In the statement signed by Malami Special Assistant on Media and Public Relations, Dr. Umar Gwandu, the Minister of Justice disclosed that the naira equivalent of the amount was credited into the designated Federal Government account on May 10, 2021.

The AGF had earlier signed a Memorandum of Understanding for the repatriation of the loot fund on behalf of the Federal Government of Nigeria.

According to him, “the development was a demonstration of the recognition of reputation Nigeria earns through records of management of recovered stolen Nigerian stolen in the execution of public oriented projects”.

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Economy

AfDB, European Bank To Bridge $2.5tn Africa’s Financing Gap

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AfDB

The African Development Bank Group and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Monday to promote sustainable private sector development in Africa.

In a statement issued by its Communication and External Relations Department, the AfDB said, “The MoU will help catalyse new sources of financing to help bridge the $2.5tn annual financing gap for development in Africa.

“This gap requires that development finance institutions work in partnership.”

The bank stated that under this partnership, the AfDB and the EBRD would capitalise on their respective

expertise and experience, with a particular focus on climate change, green and resilient infrastructure and capital markets development.

“They will also work on improving business environments, bolstering the real economy and mobilising private sector investment,” the AfDB stated.

It observed that COVID-19 was threatening progress made towards the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and was exacerbating the debt vulnerability of many African countries.

The bank stated that sustainable private sector development would be key to recovery and prosperity across the continent.

AfDB’s President, Akinwumi Adesina, after signing the memorandum with his counterpart, EBRD President,

Odile Renaud-Basso, was quoted as saying, “The new partnership agreement between our two institutions will pave the way for us to do more together, especially in supporting the growth of Africa’s private sector.

“The impact of COVID-19 on government resources is huge and we need to mobilise more private resources to help African countries build back stronger.”

On his part, Renaud-Basso, said, “The COVID-19 crisis has made the need for better and ever closer collective action even more urgent.

“Collaboration between the EBRD and the African Development Bank has grown from strength to strength over the years in the region.”

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Economy

Despite Rising Debt Profile, President Buhari Seeks New N2.342T External Loan

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Muhammadu Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari, on Tuesday, urged the Senate to approve a new external loan of N2,343,387,942,848.00, about $6.183billion, for the Federal Government to finance the 2021 budget deficit.

Senate President Ahmad Lawan read Buhari’s letter of request on the floor of the Senate at plenary.

Last Month, Investorsking recalled that there was a controversy when Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki had raised concerns over the financial trouble Nigeria might find herself due to the continuous rising debt profile.

In a recent report carried out by PWC, it was reported that:

“Actual debt servicing cost in 2020 stood at N3.27 trillion and represented about 10 percent over the budgeted amount of N2.95 trillion. This puts the debt-to-revenue ratio at approximately 83 percent, nearly double the 46 percent that was budgeted.

“This implies that about N83 out of every N100 the FG earned was used to settle interest payments for outstanding domestic and foreign debts within the reference period. In 2021, the FG plans to spend N3.32 trillion to service its outstanding debt. This is slightly higher than the N2.95 trillion budgeted in 2020”.

According to DMO Nigeria’s total public debt as at December 31, 2020, was N32.915 Trillion.

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