Global risks and financial markets’ volatility increased after Janet Yellen led FOMC held rates unchanged on Wednesday, citing global uncertainty and inconsistency in the economic figures. The situation was further compounded by the Bank of Japan decision to keep widely speculated policy rate unchanged but increased exchange traded funds by $26 billion a year.
Last week was packed with mixed economic report, the US economy expanded at a 1.2 percent rate in the second quarter of the year, falling below 2.6 percent forecast by economists. While Unemployment claims rose 14,000 to 266,000 in the week ending 22 July, but housing sector remains moderate with a solid consumer confidence.
Overall, the US economic outlook remains mixed, one because the Fed said risks to the US economy had reduced but policy makers need more time to assess Brexit possible impacts on global economics. Two, if the risks to the US economy has subsided while leaving rates unchanged?, although the Chair Janet Yellen reiterated that the Fed will raise borrowing costs gradually, but the financial markets already priced out that possibility this year and interpreted the comments as less hawkish, sending the US dollar down against most of its counterparts on Friday. This week, I will be looking at GBPJPY, AUDUSD, and USDJPY.
The UK economy is enmeshed in a negative perception after the Britons exit the European Union, even though post-Brexit effect is yet to crystallize, investors and businesses are already making adjustments to their investments and holding back on long term plans to avoid being caught up in potential recession. Although, the GDP rose more than expected in the second quarter of the year, the data were collected prior to Brexit. While few data collated ‘post-Brexit’ have shown signs of slowdown in consumer spending that has been supporting the economy since oil glut started.
On the other hand, the yen continued to gain after the Bank of Japan limited stimulus expansion to manage investors’ overzealous activities that could daunt whatever confidence is left of the economy. Technically, the GBPJPY has been on a downward trend since 25 June 2015, but with the yen renewed gain below 135.95 price level, the GBPJPY might have started continuation that will open up 129.86 support level. As long as price remains below 135.95 resistance level, I remain bearish on this pair with 129.86 as target.
The Australian dollar is overpriced and has forced the Reserve Bank of Australia to consider additional rate cuts to pressure costs and boost consumer prices. Currently, traders have priced in 25 basis points cut to 1.5 percent record low against RBA monetary policy meeting on Tuesday.
The Aussie dollar has gained around 528 pips since May 24 to peak at 76.71 cents against the dollar. If the Reserve Bank of Australia cut interest rates by 25 basis points to 1.50 percent. The AUDUSD pair is expected to plunge below ascending channel started in May as shown above. A sustained break of 0.7505 support level should attract enough sell orders to force 0.7379 first target, and 0.7143 second target in the days to come. So I remain bearish on AUDUSD.
Since both the Fed and Bank of Japan failed to impress investors this pair has lost over 363 pips. As long as 104.25 resistance level holds. I am bearish on this pair with 99.16 as the target.
Naira Exchange Rate Dips at Official Market and Black Market
The Nigerian Naira opened the week lower against the United States Dollar at the Investors and Exporters (I&E) foreign exchange window now adopted as the official forex window and also at the black market.
The local currency opened at N417.30 against the United States Dollar before declining by 0.60% to close the day at N421.50/$ at the I&E window. Forex traders at the window transacted forex worth $70.68 million on Monday.
For banks and international money transfer operators, the Central Bank of Nigeria buys US Dollars at N414.75 and sells at N415.75. The apex bank buys and sells Pounds Sterling N508.2761 and N509.5016, respectively. For the European common currency, the Euro, the central bank sold it at N433.0453 and acquired it at N432.0036 a unit.
At the parallel market popularly known as the black market, the Naira was exchanged at N599 for a United States Dollar in Abuja.
Speaking on why the exchange rate is that high, Abu Abdullahi, a currency trader at Zone 4 in Abuja, said demand for the U.S. Dollar is high despite persistent scarcity.
Crude oil extended its gain in the early hours of Tuesday on optimism that China, the world’s largest importer of the commodity, would see substantial demand recovery after the latest data pointed to slowing COVID-19 infections in the hardest-hit areas.
Brent crude oil, the international benchmark for Nigerian crude oil, gained $2.69, or 2.4% to $114.24 a barrel at 5 am Nigerian time. The U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude rose $3.71, or 3.4%, to $114.20 a barrel, Investors King understands.
“We are seeing a lot of signals that demand will start returning in that region, supporting higher prices,” said Bob Yawger, director of energy futures at Mizuho.
Finally, Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies shake off Luna-led decline to pare losses on Tuesday. Luna Foundation Guard (LFG) announced in the late hours of Monday that it was discontinuing Luna Coin and stablecoin (UST) operations to launch a new blockchain protocol that would focus on developers and building in general.
The announcement marked the end of one of the most promising cryptocurrency projects and once again reminds the world of how vulnerable the cryptocurrency space is — regardless of what creators say.
Bitcoin gained 1.99% to $30,366 per coin while Eth, a token of Ethereum, XRP (token of Ripple) and Solana appreciated by 3.15%, 3.25% and 4.39% to close at $2,084.27, $0.431744 and $55.86, respectively.
Black Market: Dollar to Naira Exchange Rate Remains Under Pressure
1 dollar to naira today on the black market was N585 and purchased at N590 in Ibadan and Lagos
The Nigerian Naira remained under pressure against global counterparts in the Nigerian unregulated parallel market, popularly known as the black market. $1 dollar to naira today on the black market was N585 and purchased at N590 in Ibadan and Lagos.
At the Investors and Exporters’ forex window, the Dollar to Naira exchange rate dipped by 0.24% to N419 from N417.70 it exchanged on Thursday.
For the interbank market, Investors King observed that the Nigerian Naira remained largely unchanged at N415.74 against the U.S. Dollar.
Bitcoin to Naira exchange rate remained subdued as the uncertainty surrounding the cryptocurrency space surged to a record-high following about a 99% plunge in the value of Terra Luna Coin and its stablecoin, UST.
Bitcoin to Naira exchange rate dropped by 1.49% in the last 24 hours to N17.859 million. While Eth, a token of the Ethereum protocol dipped by 0.34% to N1.232 million, down from about N2 million it traded a few weeks ago.
The uncertainty in the cryptocurrency space also dragged on the Binance coin (BNB) as the coin of the world’s leading cryptocurrency exchange platform moderated to N179,834 a coin, a 0.50% decline in its value.
Luna, the cryptocurrency that once again alerted the world to the vulnerability of unregulated space, is presently trading at N0.120 per coin, down from about N57,000 it was trading a week ago.
Oil prices fell on Monday as the uncertainty surrounding China, the world’s second-largest economy, continues to drag on the commodity outlook.
Brent crude, the benchmark for Nigerian crude oil dipped by 0.7%, or 72 cents to $110.83 per barrel at 11:45 am on Monday. While the U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) oil fell by 0.5%, or 58 cents to $109.91 a barrel.
The decline was a result of the prolonged COVID-19 lockdown in china. China, the world’s largest importer of crude oil, is said to have instituted lockdown restrictions in about 46 cities to curb the spreading COVID-19.
However, this lockdown has started disrupting China’s economic activity as retail sales contracted by 11% while factory production dropped by 2.9% in the month of April.
Experts are now predicting that despite Russia’s sanction, crude oil prices could drop further if the Chinese lockdown persists.
Africa, World to Enjoy More Payment Satisfaction Through eNaira – CBN says
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has said the adoption of its Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) known as eNaira will deepen financial inclusion
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has said the adoption of its Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) known as eNaira will deepen financial inclusion, ease the nation’s payment bottleneck and support transborder transactions across Africa and beyond.
Godwin Emefile, the governor of the apex bank disclosed this on Monday while receiving Bank of Uganda delegates, who were on an experience sharing tour of the Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC), in Abuja.
He said, “the CBDC would enhance the relationship between mobile banking and e-business and speed up the rate of financial inclusion.”
“The eNaira, being the first of its kind for a large country like Nigeria, was attracting the interests of many countries, Uganda inclusive.
“We’ve been receiving enquiries from various Central Banks in different parts of Africa and the world, trying to understand what we are doing in the area of CBDC. We are happy that the IMF and World Bank have recognised what we are doing in the area of CBDC.
“However, the country has deepened its payment system infrastructure, and is ranked among the best in the world.”
What it is
Earlier in October 2021, Investors king reported that the Central Bank of Nigeria launched the eNaira, after over 20 days of supposed launch.
The eNaira is a Central Bank Digital Currency backed by law and issued by the CBN as a legal tender. It is the digital form of the Naira used as cash.
The Digital currency was introduced to provide high‐value and time‐critical payment services to financial institutions, and ultimately serves as the backbone for every electronic payment in Nigeria,” President Muhammadu Buhari said.
Nigeria became the first country in Africa and one of the first in the world to introduce a digital currency to our citizens, according to Investors king.
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