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U.K. Services Expands at 16-Month Low



U.K services
  • U.K. Services Expands at 16-Month Low

The U.K. services sector expanded at the slowest rate since September 2016 in January, following the drop in new orders and high price pressures.

According to Markit, the Services Purchasing Managers’ Index stood at 53 in January, down from 54.2 in December, the lowest in 16 months. The weaker than expected growth in the services sector was attributed to the uncertainty surrounding the Brexit as investors look to decipher U.K.’s economic direction in 2018.

Duncan Brock, the Director of Customer Relationships at the Chartered Institute of Procurement & Supply, said: “Brexit blame has emerged once again as the reason for the slowdown in the growth of services activity, which was at its lowest since September 2016 as consumers reined in spending and displayed anxieties about the future.”

Despite the drop in business activity, new business inflow increased slightly faster in January, however, the overall rate of growth was slower when compared to 2017 average.

Businesses in the sector sustained job creation in the month, with job creation now growing continuously for one and half years. The rate of job creation in January rose to four-month high, suggesting businesses were retaining workers as positive output expectations surged. Business confidence climbed to its strongest since March 2017.

Chris Williamson, Chief Business Economist at IHS Markit, which compiles the survey said: “The softer service sector growth follows news of the manufacturing upturn losing momentum at the start of the year and a near-stagnant construction sector. All together, the PMI surveys point to the slowest pace of expansion since August 2016.”

Speaking further, Chris said the weak PMI readings in January point to the economic growth rate of 0.3 percent in the fourth quarter despite the fact that fourth-quarter PMI readings were historically consistent with the growth rate of 0.4-0.5 percent. According to him, the January slowdown pushes all-sector PMI into dovish territory as far as Bank of England monetary policy is concerned and with the survey indicating weaker price pressures, the data cast doubt on any imminent interest rate hike.

The pound sterling dropped against the greenback to $1.4051, up from up from $1.4345 recorded three weeks ago. A break of $1.3892 support level should validate bearish pressure and open up $1.3563 support.


CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.


Naira to Dollar Rate Today: Naira Exchanges at N463 to Dollar on Black Market




Naira to Dollar Rate on Black Market Today Stood at N463

The Nigerian Naira to dollar rate slid slightly against the United States dollar on Tuesday on the black market as social unrest continues to weigh on the nation’s economic outlook.

The local currency lost N1 against the US dollar to N463 while against the British pound it remains pressured at N592.

This decline continues against the European Union’s common currency, the Euro. The Naira traded at N540 to a single Euro on the black market.

Naira to dollar rate plunged amid rising economic uncertainties and unclear policy path caused by both COVID-19 and government limited fiscal buffers to cushion the negative impacts of the virus on Africa’s largest economy.

This coupled with the ongoing social unrest by the Nigerian youths to force decorum across the Nigerian Police Force and call global attention to decades of systemic intimidation and harassment of innocent citizens.

The Nigerian Stock Exchange has been closing flat since Thursday and continued this week, suggesting that investors are concerns and wary of eventualities as they look to safeguard their investments.

Again, the projected third-quarter recession, low foreign revenue generation, weak consumer spending and the rising cost of living are some of the factors hurting the Nigerian Naira outlook.

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Naira to a Dollar Exchange Rate Dips to N462 at Black Market Amid Social Unrest



Nigeria 1000 notes

Youth Protests Weigh on Naira to a Dollar Exchange Rate on Black Market

The ongoing youth protest in Nigeria continues to weigh on the economic outlook and investors’ sentiment across the board.

The Nigerian Naira to a US dollar exchange rate declined by N1 from N461 on Tuesday to N462 on Wednesday and in the early hours of Thursday at the black market.

Against the British Pounds, the Naira exchanged at N600, down from the N592 it traded on Tuesday. This decline continues against Europe’s common currency as the Naira dipped against the Euro by N2 from N538 to N540 on the black market.

The nationwide protest by the Nigerian youth to curb police brutality and harassment on daily basis continues to disrupt business activities in Africa’s largest economy.

Nigerian youths are saying enough is enough after the death of several youths by the law enforcement agency, Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS), that was constituted to curb robbery but gone rogue and made extortions, harassments and in some cases killing of innocent citizens their means of livelihood.

Despite the government disbanding the unit and promise to redeploy officers to other existing units, commands and formations, the youths are saying they want a total discharge of corrupt officers and the entire reform of the Nigerian Police Force (NPF) before they will even consider backing down on the ongoing protest, especially after politicians started sponsoring thugs to attack peaceful protesters in Lagos and Abuja.

The Nigerian Stock Exchange closed flat on Wednesday amid rising uncertainty surrounding the government’s ability to de-escalate the situation given the fact that the youths no longer trust the administration or Nigerian government.

The Naira remained weak against global counterparts and expected to plunge further once the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) release third-quarter Gross Domestic Product (GDP) report expected by many experts to plunge the nation into its second recession in four years.

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Naira Declines on the Black Market on Tuesday




Naira Plunges Against Global Counterparts on Tuesday on the Black Market

The Nigerian Naira declined on Tuesday on the black market despite efforts by the Central Bank of Nigeria to prop up the value of the local currency against global counterparts.

The Naira declined by N4 from N457 per US dollar it traded on Friday to N461 on Tuesday morning. Against the European common currency, the Naira fell by N1 to N538 from N537.

However, the local currency improved by N3 against the British pound from N595 it exchanged on Friday to N592 on Tuesday.

Nigeria’s weak economic outlook continues to weigh on the Naira outlook, especially with the economy projected to enter recession in the third quarter.

Despite efforts to cushion the negative effect of COVID-19 on the nation’s economy, unclear policy path amid weak business sentiment and low foreign revenue generation needed to sustain economic productivity in a majorly import-dependent economy drag on Nigerian Naira value and the entire economic outlook.


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