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Forex

Kiwi Soars to One-Year High in Latest Snub to Central Bank Cuts

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Graeme Wheeler

New Zealand’s dollar surged to the highest since May 2015 after traders deemed the central bank’s decision to cut borrowing costs was insufficiently dovish amid the global ardor for yield spurred by unprecedented global monetary easing.

The kiwi climbed against all of its 16 major counterparts after the Reserve Bank of New Zealand cut its official rate to a record, aping the reaction of its Australian counterpart when officials there lowered borrowing costs earlier this month.

Some investors had been looking for a more aggressive easing signal from the central bank, which indicated it would cut rates at least once more to boost weak inflation. The U.S. dollar advanced against the euro after last week’s better-than-expected jobs data bolstered a view that the Federal Reserve is among few central banks in developed economies whose next policy move will be to tighten.

“The kiwi surged because some in the market were looking for a very aggressive easing from the RBNZ,” said Ned Rumpeltin, the European head of foreign exchange strategy at Toronto Dominion in London. “So, even as they cut rates by 25 basis points and delivered one of the clearest easing biases currently seen among major central banks, some walked away from today’s meeting disappointed.”

The RBNZ lowered its official cash rate by a quarter point to 2 percent and published bank-bill forecasts indicating just one more reduction was in the pipeline. All sixteen economists surveyed by Bloomberg had expected the RBNZ to reduce by a quarter point. The futures market indicated on Wednesday that traders were certain of a reduction and even saw 20 percent odds for a 50 basis-point drop.

The RBNZ and the Reserve Bank of Australia prefer weaker currencies to stoke inflation back into their respective target bands. Two rate reductions by the Australian central bank since May and six by its antipodean neighbor in the past 14 months haven’t weakened exchange rates as their benchmark borrowing costs remain well above those of their peers, attracting foreign investment.

The kiwi climbed 0.6 percent to 72.49 U.S. cents as of 7:44 a.m. in New York, having jumped as much as 1.9 percent to 73.41 — the highest since May 2015 — after the RBNZ announcement. The Australian dollar rose 0.1 percent to 77.14 cents and is at levels not seen since before the May rate reduction.

“Australia and New Zealand yields remain attractive in a low-rate world,” said Jason Wong, a currency strategist at Bank of New Zealand in Wellington. “There’d still be upward pressure on the currencies even with rate cuts and that has been an ongoing theme since the start of the current-easing cycle. The U.S. outlook and in particular the prospect of Fed policy-tightening remains the key for the two currencies.”

After saying in his policy statement that a decline in the kiwi dollar “is needed,” Wheeler conceded in a news conference in Wellington that the RBNZ had “very limited influence” over the exchange rate. He also said he hadn’t given serious consideration to a half-point reduction because it wasn’t warranted and, in a “normal” situation, the RBNZ would probably be raising rates to cool the rampant housing market.

Australian 10-year bonds offer a 34 basis points yield spread over their U.S. equivalent, up from a low of 26 basis points Aug. 2. New Zealand 10-year bonds yielded 60 basis points more than similar American notes.

“Markets remain in strong yield-seeking mode,” said Robert Rennie, Westpac Banking Corp.’s global head of foreign-exchange and commodity strategy. “Both the Australian dollar and the New Zealand dollar appear well-supported for now.”

Is the CEO/Founder of Investors King Limited. A proven foreign exchange research analyst and a published author on Yahoo Finance, Businessinsider, Nasdaq, Entrepreneur.com, Investorplace, and many more. He has over two decades of experience in global financial markets.

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Naira

Dollar to Naira Black Market Today, February 23rd, 2024

As of February 23rd, 2024, the exchange rate for the US dollar to the Nigerian Naira stands at 1 USD to 1,610 NGN in the black market, also referred to as the parallel market or Aboki fx.

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Naira Dollar Exchange Rate - Investors King

As of February 23rd, 2024, the exchange rate for the US dollar to the Nigerian Naira stands at 1 USD to 1,610 NGN in the black market, also referred to as the parallel market or Aboki fx.

For those engaging in currency transactions in the Lagos Parallel Market (Black Market), buyers purchase a dollar for N1,650 and sell it at N1,640 on Thursday, February 22nd, 2024 based on information from Bureau De Change (BDC).

Meaning, the Naira exchange rate improved when compared to today’s rate below.

This black market rate signifies the value at which individuals can trade their dollars for Naira outside the official or regulated exchange channels.

Investors and participants closely monitor these parallel market rates for a more immediate reflection of currency dynamics.

How Much is Dollar to Naira Today in the Black Market?

Kindly be aware that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) does not acknowledge the existence of the parallel market, commonly referred to as the black market.

The CBN has advised individuals seeking to participate in Forex transactions to utilize official banking channels.

Black Market Dollar to Naira Exchange Rate

  • Buying Rate: N1,610
  • Selling Rate: N1,600

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Naira

Naira Appreciates Slightly to N1,542.58/$ at NAFEM

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New Naira notes

The Naira appreciated marginally against the United States dollar, closing at N1,542.58/$ at the Nigerian Autonomous Foreign Exchange Market (NAFEM) on Wednesday.

This modest gain represents a 2.9 percent appreciation from the previous day’s rate of N1,598.54, highlighting a nuanced fluctuation in the currency’s value.

According to data sourced from the FMDQ Securities Exchange, a platform overseeing FX trading in Nigeria, the Naira’s journey throughout the trading day was marked by an intra-day high of N1,755 and a low of N1,050.

Moreover, the total foreign exchange turnover surged to $172.14 million, indicating a 47 percent increase from the previous day.

Despite the Naira’s marginal gain at NAFEM, concerns persist regarding the widening gap between the official and parallel market rates.

The Naira’s depreciation to N1,900 against the dollar in the parallel market before it moderated to N1,687 later in the day.

Analysts and Bureau De Change operators foresee further pressure on the Naira, with predictions of a potential all-time low of 2,000/dollar at the parallel market in the coming weeks.

The demand for the greenback continues to fuel volatility, prompting regulatory actions from entities like the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to curb speculative activities.

As stakeholders monitor the currency’s trajectory, the CBN’s efforts to address forex liquidity challenges and stabilize the Naira remain under scrutiny amidst evolving market dynamics.

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Forex

Police and EFCC Personnel Raid Bureau De Change Outlets in Ibadan’s Sabo Area

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Bureau De Change Operator

In a concerted effort to curb illicit currency dealings and stabilize the nation’s currency, Nigerian security operatives, including police and Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) personnel, launched a raid on Bureau De Change (BDC) outlets in Ibadan’s Sabo area.

Sabo, a prominent district in Ibadan, the capital of Oyo State, serves as a central hub for currency exchange activities in the region.

Videos circulated on social media platforms captured the dramatic scene as armed security personnel and their convoy descended on the bustling Sabo Road.

The raid comes amidst growing concerns over the depreciation of the Nigerian naira, which hit record lows against major foreign currencies, including the dollar.

Sources revealed that the naira’s value reached alarming levels, with exchanges as high as N1980 to $1 on the parallel market and N1780 on the official market.

President Bola Tinubu’s administration has intensified efforts to crack down on individuals involved in currency racketeering, aiming to restore stability to the nation’s economy.

The clampdown signals a firm stance against illegal currency trading and serves as a deterrent to those engaging in speculative activities.

While the raids may disrupt illicit operations, they also underscore the government’s commitment to restoring confidence in the financial sector and promoting transparency in currency exchange practices.

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