Connect with us

Markets

Nigeria Government Hints at Asset sales to Lift Economy Out of Recession

Published

on

change-begins-with-me

Nigeria’s finance minister hinted on Monday that the country’s government might opt for asset sales next year to boost the public coffers as the economy struggles.

“Looking at 2017, how we fund the 2017 budget, I think we have started to work on that and look at a mixed strategy of debt and asset realizations,” Kemi Adeosun told CNBC Africa.

Nigeria’s gross domestic product (GDP) is set to shrink for the first time on an annual basis in 21 years in 2016, as the oil-reliant economy struggles with weak crude prices and a collapse in its currency.

Some people, such as Nigerian billionaire Aliko Dangote, have already suggested the state sell off some of assets in order to boost public finances.
“I think the real challenge for us is now for us to have the political will in terms of selling some assets,” Dangote, who is said to be Africa’s richest man, told CNBC Africa on Friday.

“I think it’s an easier route than the IMF (International Monetary Fund) or the World Bank to borrow money, because what you need to do is actually to beef up the reserves,” he added.

Dangote suggested the government should sell off stakes in some of its joint ventures with the private sector in an open tender process. He said that Africa Finance Corporation — a development finance institution established in 2007 — would fetch close to $800 million. Policymakers should also look to sell 100 percent of the country’s stake in Nigeria LNG, a natural resources firm, Dangote said.

Nigeria’s credit rating was downgraded to B from B+ by S&P Global Ratings on Friday. The international ratings agency forecast the Nigerian economy would shrink by 1 percent this year.

“Nigeria’s economy has weakened more than we expected owing to a marked contraction in oil production, a restrictive foreign exchange regime and delayed fiscal stimulus,” S&P said in a report on the downgrade.

Real GDP fell by 2.06 percent between April and June, year-on-year, having shrunk by 0.36 percent in the first quarter.

Fiscal stimulus could also come from the government’s plans for much-needed infrastructure plans for the country, particularly on road improvement.

“The infrastructure deficit is such that government on its own cannot close it and so we have consistently said that we will look for opportunities to partner with the private sector … and we will have user fees to actually pay for them, particularly in the area of roads where it is very clear that the deficit is huge,” Adeosun told CNBC Africa.

—With contribution from CNBC Africa and CNBC’s Matt Clinch.

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.

Gold

Gold Gained Ahead of Joe Biden Inauguration 2021

Published

on

Gold

Gold Gained Ahead of Joe Biden Inauguration 2021

Gold price rose from one and a half month low on Tuesday ahead of President-elect Joe Biden’s inauguration on Wednesday.

The precious metal, largely regarded as a haven asset by investors, edged up by 0.2 percent to $1,844.52 per ounce on Tuesday, up from $1,802.61 on Monday.

According to Michael McCarthy, the Chief Market Strategies, CMC Markets, the surged in gold price is a result of the projected drop in dollar value or uncertainty.

He said, “The key factor appears to be the (U.S.) currency.”

As expected, a change in administration comes with the change in economic policies, especially taking into consideration the peculiarities of the present situation. In fact, even though Biden, Janet Yellen and the rest of the new cabinet are expected to go all out on additional stimulus with the support of Democrats controlled Houses, economic uncertainties with rising COVID-19 cases and slow vaccine distribution remained a huge concern.

Also, the effectiveness of the vaccines can not be ascertained until wider rollout.

Still, which policy would be halted or sustained by the incoming administration remained a concern that has forced many investors to once again flee other assets for Gold ahead of tomorrow’s inauguration.

Continue Reading

Crude Oil

Crude Oil Holds Steady Above $55 Per Barrel on Tuesday

Published

on

Oil

Crude Oil Holds Steady Above $55 Per Barrel on Tuesday

Brent Crude oil, against which Nigerian crude oil is priced, rose from $54.46 per barrel on Monday to $55.27 per barrel as of 9:03 am Nigerian time on Tuesday.

Last week, Brent crude oil rose to 11 months high of $57.38 per barrel before pulling back on rising COVID-19 cases and lockdowns in key global economies like the United Kingdom, Euro-Area, China, etc.

While OPEC has left 2021 oil demand unchanged and President-elect Joe Biden has announced a $1.9 trillion stimulus package, experts are saying the rising number of new cases of COVID-19 amid poor vaccine distribution could drag on growth and demand for oil in 2021.

On Friday, Dan Yergin, vice-chairman at IHS Markit, said in addition to the stimulus package “There are two other things that are going with it … one is of course, vaccinations — in the sense that eventually this crisis is going to end, and maybe by the spring, lockdowns will be over.”

“The other thing is what Saudi Arabia did. This is the third time Saudi Arabia has made a sudden change in policy in less than a year, and this one was to announce (the) 1 million barrel a day cut — partly because they are worried about the impact of the surge in virus that’s occurring,” he said.

Also, the stimulus being injected into the United States economy could spur huge Shale production and disrupt OPEC and allies’ efforts at balancing the global oil market in 2021.

Continue Reading

Crude Oil

Crude Oil Pulled Back Despite Joe Biden Stimulus

Published

on

Oil 1

Crude Oil Pulled Back Despite Joe Biden Stimulus

Crude oil pulled back on Friday despite the $1.9 trillion stimulus package announced by U.S President-elect, Joe Biden.

Brent crude oil, against which Nigeria’s oil is priced, pulled back from $57.38 per barrel on Wednesday to $55.52 per barrel on Friday in spite of the huge stimulus package announced on Thursday.

On Thursday, OPEC, in its latest outlook for the year, said uncertainties remain high in 2021 with the number of COVID-19 new cases on the rise.

OPEC said, “Uncertainties remain high going forward with the main downside risks being issues related to COVID-19 containment measures and the impact of the pandemic on consumer behavior.”

“These will also include how many countries are adapting lockdown measures, and for how long. At the same time, quicker vaccination plans and a recovery in consumer confidence provide some upside optimism.”

Governments across Europe have announced tighter and longer coronavirus lockdowns, with vaccinations not expected to have a significant impact for the next few months.

The complex remains in pause mode, a development that should not be surprising given the magnitude of the oil price gains that have been developing for some 2-1/2 months,” Jim Ritterbusch, president of Ritterbusch and Associates, said.

Still, OPEC left its crude oil projections unchanged for the year. The oil cartel expected global oil demand to increase by 5.9 million barrels per day year on year to an average of 95.9 million per day in 2020.

But also OPEC expects a recent rally and stimulus to boost U.S. Shale crude oil production in the year, a projection Investors King experts expect to hurt OPEC strategy in 2021.

Continue Reading

Trending