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Dudley Says September Hike Possible, Markets Too Complacent

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William Dudley

The Federal Reserve could potentially raise interest rates as soon as next month, New York Fed President William Dudley said, warning investors that they are underestimating the likelihood of increases in borrowing costs.

“We’re edging closer towards the point in time where it will be appropriate, I think, to raise interest rates further,” Dudley, who serves as vice chairman of the rate-setting Federal Open Market Committee, said Tuesday on Fox Business Network. Asked whether the FOMC could vote to raise the benchmark rate at its next meeting Sept. 20-21, Dudley said, “I think it’s possible.”

Investors expect about one rate hike between now and the end of next year, according to federal funds futures contracts, and they marked up probabilities only slightly on Tuesday. Dudley said such estimates are “too low” and that “the market is complacent about the need for gradually snugging up short-term interest rates over the next year or so.”

“We are looking for growth in the second half of the year that will be stronger than the first half,” Dudley said. “I think the labor market is going to continue to tighten, and in that environment I think we are getting closer to the day where we are going to have to snug up interest rates a little bit.”

The FOMC left interest rates unchanged when it met last month, but said in a post-meeting statement that “near-term risks to the economic outlook have diminished.” The Fed will publish minutes of that meeting Wednesday at 2 p.m. in Washington.

Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart, also speaking Tuesday, said he’s confident growth is accelerating, setting the stage for one or two rate increases this year. He said he wouldn’t rule out one coming in September.

‘Serious Discussion’

“If the meeting were today, I think the economic data stream would justify a serious discussion of a rate increase,” Lockhart, who isn’t a voting member of the FOMC this year, told reporters after a speech in Knoxville, Tennessee. “Now we have more data to come in in the next few weeks before the meeting. We’ll see what that tells us. But I would not rule out September, at least for a serious discussion.”

While U.S. stocks rose to another record high on Monday, the New York Fed chief said he didn’t see any signs of asset bubbles that are “particularly disturbing.” At the same time, the bond market “looks a little bit stretched,” in part because major central banks are “creating a search for yield globally” through their bond-buying programs, he said. That demand is spilling over to the U.S., where Treasury yields are higher than in Japan, Germany and the U.K.

“The 10-year Treasury yield, at 1.5 percent, is pretty low in an environment where we think we are making progress towards our objective, we’re pretty close to full employment, we think inflation is going to trend back to 2 percent over the next couple of years,” Dudley said.

Brexit Risks

Even so, Dudley struck a cautious tone on the pace and ultimate amount of Fed tightening. He said near-term risks from the effects on financial markets of the U.K. vote in June to leave the European Union had diminished, but added that there were uncertainties about the longer-term economic impact and whether foreign central banks would be able to support global economic growth with negative interest-rate policies.

In the U.S., “there are reasons to think that monetary policy isn’t particularly stimulative right now, and you can sort of judge that by the fact that we only grew at a 1 percent annual rate in the first half of the year,” he said. “So we probably don’t have a lot of monetary policy tightenings to actually do over time.”

A Labor Department report released Aug. 5 showed two straight months of strong job creation in June and July following a tiny increase in May that raised worries about the health of the economy. The Fed’s preferred measure of inflation, which has been below the central bank’s 2 percent target for four years, has been slow to pick up.

“In my mind, the inflation outlook really hasn’t changed very much,” Dudley said. “The key question is: Are we going to get enough growth to put pressure on resources, pushing up wages and gradually pushing up inflation towards 2 percent? So far we seem to be on that trajectory.”

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.

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Forex

CBN Goes After Abokifx, Freezes Bank Accounts for Publishing Black Market Rates

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Abokifx - Investors King

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has directed deposit money banks to freeze all the bank accounts associated with AbokiFX and its owner, Oniwinde Olusegun Adedotun, for publishing foreign exchange rates other than the rates determined by the CBN.

The apex bank had warned publishers to desist from publishing forex rates determined by the unregulated parallel market, popularly known as the black market, where speculators and hoarders largely manipulate the nation’s foreign exchange rates as seen in recent weeks.

In an email to publishers by the NGN Project, presumably acting on behalf of the CBN, the organisation had quoted section 11 sub-section 1(c) and 2 (a,b) of the National Economic Intelligence Committee Act of 2004 that stated “it shall be an offence for any person, association of individuals or body corporate (whether public or private) to publish or cause to be published exchange and interest rates other than the rates determined by the Bank from time to time.”

The Act stipulated N100,000 fine or imprisonment for a term of two years or both for individual and N500,000 fine and suspension or revocation of certificate of registration or cerificate of incorporation for association or individuals or corporate body.

This was after the central bank halted the sale of forex to bureau de change operators after accussing them of aiding the activities of criminals at the unregulated black market and been a channel for illicit financial flow. The move, which resulted in chronic forex scarcity and all time high foreign exchange rate, has forced the apex bank to go after publishers in effort to discourage people from patronising the black market and to force Nigerians to reject the unreason exchange rate of N567 to a United States Dollar and approach their banks for N412 to N415 per US Dollars.

Despite covid-19 challenges and limited forex generation, the apex bank has continued to support the Nigerian Naira and go after forex manipulators.

The NGN Project had described AbokiFX.com and its owner has criminals ‘committing crimes against the Nigerian state’. See the email CBN sent to publishers below.

 

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Naira

Naira Exchange Rates Today, Thursday, September 16, 2021

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Naira - Investors King

Naira continued its downward trend against other currencies on Thursday as it plunged to N565 against the United States Dollar at the black market. The local currency traded at N765 and N650 to British Pound and Euro, respectively.

Persistent forex scarcity amid a series of in effective policies have made access to forex impossible for most of businesses that operates in largely import dependent African biggest economy.

Nigeria’s forex reserves, the means in which the nation, service its dollar consuming 200 million population has been on a decline in recent weeks despite crude oil trading at over a year high of $73 a barrel. Some of the factors that have crippled the ability of central bank to cushion the economy with enough forex is low crude oil production, partly due to production cap, weak local manufacturing sector that has made the nation a huge import dependent economy, the ongoing crisis between herders and farmers, rising costs even with falling inflation, etc.

At the bureau de change section, Naira exchanged at N555, N765 and N645 to a United States Dollar, British Pound and Euro common currency.

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had stopped the sale of forex to the bureau de change operators to plug forex leakages and curb activities of criminal elements, the decision has worsen forex availability. See other forex rates below.

Naira Black Market Exchange Rates

Morning * Midday** Evening *** Final Rates

Date USD GBP EURO YUAN Canadian Australian
NGN BUY/SELL BUY/SELL BUY/SELL BUY/SELL BUY/SELL BUY/SELL
16/09/2021 557/565** 758/765** 640/650** 70/75 430/440 310/330
15/09/2021 552/562 754/760 640/648 70/75 430/440 310/330
14/09/2021 550/557 754/760 640/645 70/75 430/440 310/330
13/09/2021 543/550 742/750 630/636 70/75 425/435 310/330
10/09/2021 538/545 738/745 630/636 70/75 420/432 310/330
09/09/2021 532/540 730/740 627/632 70/76 419/430 310/330
08/09/2021 528/535 723/730 623/629 70/75 419/426 310/330

Bureau De Change Naira Rates

Date USD GBP EURO
NGN BUY/SELL BUY/SELL BUY/SELL
16/09/2021 548/555 753/765 635/645
15/09/2021 548/555 750/761 635/645
14/09/2021 548/555 750/761 635/645
13/09/2021 535/550 737/745 630/636
11/09/2021 530/547 735/745 630/635
10/09/2021 530/547 735/745 630/635
09/09/2021 528/538 730/738 625/630
08/09/2021 525/531 718/730 616/625

Central Bank of Nigeria’s Official Naira Rates

N.B: These tables are updated three times a day.

 

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Naira

Dollar to Naira Exchange Rate Today, Tuesday, September 14, 2021

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Naira Notes - Investors King

Naira extended its decline on Tuesday as it hits N557 against the United States Dollar at the parallel market, popularly called the black market.

The local currency exchanged at N557 to a United States Dollar at the black market, representing an all-time record low against the greenback. Against the British Pound and the Euro common currency, the Naira slid to N760 and N645, respectively.

Africa’s largest economy is enmeshed in low forex liquidity caused by poor economic structure that over the years has limited and weakened the nation’s foreign revenue generation. This weak foreign revenue generation has impeded Nigeria, a largely import dependent economy, from effectively servicing her economy with necessary forex for economic activities.

The inability to service the economy with enough forex coupled with the decision of the Central Bank of Nigeria to halt the sale of forex to Buruea De Change Operators have compounded Nigeria’s forex situation and further disrupted the Naira’s outlook.

Still, the apex bank continues to post its inaccessible official rates as shown in the table below. Despite insisting that exchange rates are stipulated Central Bank of Nigeria’s rates, many Nigerians and businesses operating in the country find it hard or impossible to access forex at the central bank’s rates.

The Central Bank of Nigeria sells U.S Dollar at N410.51, while the British Pound and Euro are sold at N568.1869 and N483.6629, respectively.

Naira Black Market Exchange Rates

Morning * Midday** Evening *** Final Rates

Date USD GBP EURO YUAN Canadian Australian
NGN BUY/SELL BUY/SELL BUY/SELL BUY/SELL BUY/SELL BUY/SELL
14/09/2021 550/557 754/760 640/645 70/75 430/440 310/330
13/09/2021 543/550 742/750 630/636 70/75 425/435 310/330
10/09/2021 538/545 738/745 630/636 70/75 420/432 310/330
09/09/2021 532/540 730/740 627/632 70/76 419/430 310/330
08/09/2021 528/535 723/730 623/629 70/75 419/426 310/330

Bureau De Change Naira Rates

Date USD GBP EURO
NGN BUY/SELL BUY/SELL BUY/SELL
14/09/2021 548/555 750/761 635/645
13/09/2021 535/550 737/745 630/636
11/09/2021 530/547 735/745 630/635
10/09/2021 530/547 735/745 630/635
09/09/2021 528/538 730/738 625/630
08/09/2021 525/531 718/730 616/625

Central Bank of Nigeria’s Official Naira Rates

N.B: These tables are updated three times a day.

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