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US Credit Card Balances Drop by $10B in August; Losses for Issuers Reach $53B in 2020

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The Federal Reserve’s report states that the total consumer revolving debt plummeted by $9.4 billion in August 2020. Total debt, which primarily consists of credit card balances, sank to $985.3 billion during that month.

Based on the research data analyzed and published by Stock Apps, US credit card debt dropped from $930 billion in Q4 2019 to $890 billion in Q1 2020. In Q2 2020, it sank further down to $820 billion. It had been on an uptrend since 2014, going from $660 billion in Q1 of that year to the Q4 2019 figure.

Mortgage Refinance and Originations Could Soar to $4 Trillion in 2020

Card balances in August 2020 dropped by 11.3%, compared to a 0.3% drop in July and a 2.0% drop in June. From an increase of 4.2% in February, the figure had dropped by 28.2% in March, 65% in April and 28.6% in May.

May 2020 saw revolving consumer debt drop below $1 trillion for the first time since May 2011, during the Great Recession. Overall, consumer debt dropped by 7.6% in Q1 and 30.8% in Q2 2020. The Q2 drop which amounted to over $70 billion was the steepest on record. According to McKinsey, credit card losses could rise to $53 billion in 2020 from $38 billion in 2019.

As credit card debt declined, mortgage balances increased by $68 billion in Q2 2020 to reach $9.78 trillion according to New York Fed’s data. Also, new mortgage originations reached $1.1 trillion during the period while refinancing increased by 200% year-over-year (YoY).

It is projected that in Q3 2020, refinancing and originations could increase by 25% or more. That would see total refinance lending and origination volume cross the $4 trillion threshold for the first time. However, delinquent mortgages in September 2020 were 6.66% compared to only 3.53% in September 2019.

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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MTN Nigeria, Gameloft Partner to Increase Access to Variety of Exciting Games

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MTN Nigeria announced it has partnered with Gameloft, a leader in the development and publishing of games, to increase access to a variety of fun and exciting games online.

The telecommunications giant in collaboration with its new partner, Gameloft announced the launch of MTN Gameworld, a new gaming platform for its subscribers.

According to MTN, the new platform will allow the Nigerian growing gaming community access to a lot of unique games online through an extensive premium catalogue from Gameloft and other renowned publishers.

Commenting on the partnership, Srinivas Rao, the Chief Digital Officer, MTN Nigeria, said, “We are constantly seeking to deliver innovative products that support the aspirations of our customers, whilst delivering superior user experience. This partnership allows us to provide our customers with access to a variety of exhilarating games from Gameloft and other leading publishers at an affordable rate.”

MTN Gameworld will allow subscribed customers access to a variety of games, which they can play at subsidised data rates through the MTN Gameworld app. Android, iOS and Windows phone users can subscribe via SMS, app, web, USSD menu (*447#), 131 USSD menu and any other MTN customer channel.

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President Buhari Commissions 5,000bpd Modular Refinery Built in Imo State

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President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday commissioned the 5,000 barrels per day modular refinery built by Waltersmith Group in Imo State.

President Buhari, who commissioned the new modular refinery virtually, said the refinery will enable Nigeria to export petroleum products to neighbouring countries and other markets.

The 5,000 barrels per day Waltersmith Modular Refinery is the first phase of 50,000 barrels per day combined capacity plant planned for Imo State, according to the Group.

Buhari commended Waltersmith Group, an indigenous oil firm, and the Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board for the collaboration that led to the actualisation of the modular refinery.

President Buhari, therefore, directed the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, the Department of Petroleum Resources and all other relevant government agencies to provide Waltersmith all the necessary support in terms of access to crude oil and condensate feedstock.

Buhari said, “We rolled out our refining roadmap in 2018, to address challenges in the downstream sector. After many years of government giving out modular refining licences without any coming on-stream, we are today seeing a commissioning within two years.

“The plan to commence the expansion of this refinery to 50,000bpd capacity, to refine crude oil and condensate, is a demonstration of the economic reform Nigeria is undergoing.

“The realisation of the refinery roadmap will ultimately lead us to becoming a net exporter of petroleum products, not only to our neighbouring countries but to other wide markets,” he said.

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Elon Musk Net Worth Jumps by $100 Billion this Year to Topple Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Others 

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Elon Musk, the Chief Executive Officer and founder of Tesla, is now the world’s second-richest person following another surge in the price of Tesla share.

Musk total net worth jumped by $7.6 billion to $110 billion between November 16 and 17 to dethrone Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg, from the third position.

Since then, Tesla stock has been on a bullish run and in the last 24 hours added $7.24 billion to Elon Musk’s total net worth, according to Bloomberg Billionaire Index. Bringing the billionaire’s total net worth to $128 billion.

Elon Musk’s net worth rose from just $28 billion in January 2020 to $128 billion on November 24, 2020, representing an increase of $100 billion, the highest by any billionaire.

Musk has finally toppled Bill Gates as the second richest person and for the first time, Bill Gates is the third richest man in the world. This is the first time in almost 40 years that Gates will be in the third position.

Billionaires listed on Bloomberg Index have collectively gained $1.3 trillion this year.

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