- Interbank Rates Rise as CBN Sells Treasury Bills
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) sold about N283 billion ($877.11 million) worth of treasury bills to mop up liquidity, driving up interbank lending rates, traders said on Friday.
Overnight lending rates rose to 20 per cent after the bills was sold but later dropped to 16 per cent towards the market close because the banking system was still in credit to the tune of around N17.44 billion, Reuters reported.
“We expect the market to open in the negative this week, given the volume of OMO bills sold, while the interbank lending rate is seen within the 18-20 per cent range,” one dealer said.
The bank had earlier repaid N160.64 billion worth of matured bills but sold a higher amount to drain liquidity, traders said. It sold the one-year bill on Friday at a rate of 18.5 percent.
In September, the central bank sold Open Market Operations (OMO) bills to soak up about 1.2 trillion naira, in a bid to curb speculation against the currency and shore up fixed income yields to attract investors.
The central bank has said it will keep interest rates tight to attract foreign currency and resolve a chronic dollar shortage brought on by a slump in oil prices.
The CBN Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele recently said the ank will pursue price stability as an anchor for economic growth as well as to attract foreign investors as the country battles recession and rising inflation. Emefiele said in an interview with The Banker Magazine.
“The CBN does not reckon that curbing inflation, attracting foreign investors and supporting growth are mutually exclusive objectives. Rather, the monetary policy committee’s decision reflects the (central bank’s) prioritisation of its core mandate of pursuing price stability as an anchor and enabler for economic growth.
“As we have consistently said, the bank will continue to ensure that its decisions not only consider price and financial system stability, but also issues of employment and growth.”
He reiterated that the reintroduction of a flexible exchange rate system has helped increase transparency in the FX market, cleared an estimated $4 billion backlog in FX demand, reduce arbitrage and speculative opportunities, and create a more predictable structure for businesses to prioritise their FX demand, we believe that this policy has been beneficial to the economy.
“This policy has led to a gradual but steady inflow of new FX into the market. All of these have largely met the bank’s expectations in the short term. We believe that these benefits will become magnified as the policy’s sustenance improves the credibility of the CBN and investors trust us more to return more forcefully as active participants in Nigeria’s FX market.
“Obviously, the reintroduction of the flexible exchange rate system
immediately led to a depreciation of the naira in the interbank market, and helped close the significant spread with the parallel market. Also, this policy encouraged movement of FX demand from the parallel to the interbank market, which also brought the two rates closer.
“Finally, new foreign portfolio inflows into the interbank market and our recent policy of allowing commercial banks to transfer some share of diaspora remittances to bureaux de change have also helped moderate rates in both markets.”
Increase in Banks’ Bad Loans Caused by Construction Sector
The banking industry saw a 13.6 percent MoM (month on month) increase in bad loans to N2.76 trillion in August 2021, and the Central Bank of Nigeria attributed the increase to the rising loan defaults in the country’s construction sector.
The construction industry is touted to be under intense pressure due to the rise in the prices of building materials.
The Central Bank of Nigeria said this in its August Economic Report, stating that the NPL (Non-Performing Loans) ratio of the banking industry went up to six percent in August, one percentage point more than the five percent regulatory limit.
According to data from the apex bank, the total credit to the domestic economy went up by 2.2 percent to reach N46 trillion in August, from the N44.99 trillion recorded in July. This suggests that the NPL (bad loans) went up to N2.76 trillion in August from N2.43 trillion seen in July, a N330 billion or 13.6 percent increase.
The big rise in NPLs was explained by the CBN as a result of increased loan defaults in the construction sector, which accounted for about 4.7 percent or N905 billion of credit owed to other sectors in August, going up from 4.6 percent of N879 billion back in July.
The apex bank said the increase in the construction sector’s non-performing loans was due to the increase in process of building materials, which made it more difficult for contractors to meet their debt obligations.
Regarding this development, the Managing Director of Built2Suit Limited – a firm of architects – Ibukun Odu, said that apart from the increase in loan defaults, construction firms may have to turn to layoffs in order to reduce overhead cost.
Odu lauded the correctness of the CBN report, stating that a lot of contractors were finding the period extremely difficult. Odu stated that all the main components have witnessed increases of between 75 – 90 percent. He mentioned cement, which used to be sold at N2500 but is now sold between N4000 and N4200.
FirstBank DecemberIssaVybe: Showing Kindness as You Vybe
The roof is already getting raised with #FirstBankIssaVybe, #DecemberIssaVybe campaigns. With FirstBank, it is always a total experience of being woven into the fabric of society from banking at its finest, to music, fashion, arts, and sports. Across the spectrum of human endeavour, FirstBank stands tall behind its over 32 million customers and counting.
As FirstBank makes every day a vybe every December, it is also passionate about ensuring that everyone vybes with kindness. This is in sync with the words of Maurice Elias, Professor of Psychology, “without kindness, our communities, families, schools, and classrooms become places of incivility.” As we get the blast of the season, the 127 years strong banking brand in furtherance of its kindness campaign has created a simple calendar to ease your ability to create a SPARK in the lives of people around you.
At FirstBank, SPARK stands for Start Performing Acts of Random Kindness. The SPARK initiative was launched 4 years ago to make a difference in the nation by seeking to inspire and institutionalize kindness. By encouraging kindness, empathy and consideration for others, SPARK is placing FirstBank at the forefront of the social impact space. The unique way FirstBank is amplifying kindness is through its different directorates and departments. This way the Bank is reaching more communities, touching more lives, and spreading kindness.
The FirstBank kindness drive stands on three (3) pillars of compassion, civility, and charity. Compassion and charity readily come tops when we think about kindness, and FirstBank is championing the cause to also promote civility through the SPARK initiative. Civility covers the aspects of kindness that does not cost you anything to use in igniting the world around you. Imagine as you get to the venue of the next FirstBank’s DecemberIssaVybe show, and you give up a parking lot closer to the event hall to the car behind you?
The global head of marketing and corporate communication of FirstBank, Folake Ani-Mumuney says “At FirstBank, we spend every waking moment working to create meaning in the lives of our customers and publics. We are inspiring kindness because it brings meaning to lives and creates a happier society. So, as you vybe this Yuletide, vybe with kindness.”
Kindness does not have to cost you a kobo, so click here to download and share your kindness calendar for those simple tips to start performing acts of random kindness every day this December.
The need to promote kindness in our homes, schools, fun places, and the society at large cannot be over-emphasized especially with the increased incidence of bullying prevalent around us. In promoting the need for kindness in education and ‘cyber kindness’, FirstBank sponsored two impactful webinars during its corporate responsibility & sustainability week in July 2021. You can click here to access the Zoom recordings of the webinars.
Kindness should be a way of life, and FirstBank is at the forefront. Join the kindness train, vybe with kindness this Yuletide and always!
Stanbic IBTC Emerges Most Outstanding Commercial Bank Brand in Nigeria
Stanbic IBTC Bank PLC, a subsidiary of Stanbic IBTC Holdings PLC, was named the “Most Outstanding Commercial Bank Brand in Nigeria” at the 2021 edition of the BrandCom Awards which was held recently.
The awards, organised by Brand Communicator Magazine recognised brands, organisations and personalities. It took cognisance of their outstanding contributions to the growth and development of the Nigerian economy.
Wole Adeniyi, Chief Executive, Stanbic IBTC Bank, appreciated the organisers for the award, and noted that Stanbic IBTC Bank has over the years provided unparalleled services and designed products tailored explicitly towards meeting the needs of its customers.
Wole noted that the award would spur the organisation to continue providing excellent services to its clients. The awards reaffirm the organisation’s commitment to providing world-class financial services to its network of clients.
The Stanbic IBTC Bank Chief Executive said: “We are delighted to have emerged the “Most Outstanding Commercial Bank Brand” at the BrandCom Awards. This award confirms that we prioritise our customers’ interests because they are the reason we are in business. We pledge to continue developing innovative products and services that are customer-centric, just as we are committed in our quest to continue fulfilling the financial needs of our customers at all times.”
Wole added that Stanbic IBTC would strive to continue exceeding its customers’ expectations.
Stanbic IBTC remains committed to providing a simplified customer-friendly experience that enhances customer satisfaction and exposes them to new trends in the financial services industry.
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