Naira Decline Continues in P2P Market, Reaching as Low as N925/$

Must read

By Milcah  Tanimu

The Naira has once again experienced a decline in the peer-to-peer (P2P) market, plummeting to N925 against the US dollar on Wednesday morning. The currency did show some moderation, reaching around N905/$ at the time of writing this report. This slide was triggered by a JP Morgan report revealing Nigeria’s net foreign exchange reserves to be at $3.7 billion.Dollar-Backed Stablecoins and P2P Market Dynamics

Within the P2P market, Nigerians predominantly turn to dollar-backed stablecoins (such as USDT) for hedging and transactions. This allows tech-savvy individuals to conveniently convert their Naira into stablecoins denominated in dollars. These stablecoins enable smoother international money transfers, purchase of goods and services, and more efficient transactions compared to traditional Nigerian banks.

Nonetheless, it’s crucial to acknowledge that this market operates with minimal regulations and carries significant risks.

JP Morgan’s Perspective and Foreign Exchange Challenges

JP Morgan emphasized that Nigeria’s foreign exchange (FX) market remains a subject of scrutiny due to the true value of its net FX reserves. The overall balance of payments deficit continues to exert pressure on the FX market. The report also highlighted that Nigeria’s FX reserves have been significantly diminished compared to previous estimates due to larger-than-expected currency swaps and borrowing against existing reserves.

Persistent short selling of the Naira persisted, despite a reduction in cash held outside of banks from N2.26 trillion in June to N2.20 trillion in July.

Central Bank’s Countermeasures and Economic Realities

To address the devaluation of the Naira and combat inflation, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has introduced various measures, including raising the cash reserve ratio (CRR) for banks, implementing open market operations (OMO), and altering the exchange rate regime.

Although these measures initially spurred positive market reactions, the support seemed short-lived as the local currency continued to weaken against the US dollar in subsequent periods.

Efforts to Stabilize FX Market and Skepticism

The Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC) Limited recently secured a $3 billion emergency loan from the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank) to stabilize the country’s FX market. Despite these efforts, currency speculation has escalated, indicating challenges to maintaining the FX market’s integrity.

The CBN has also introduced initiatives such as the Price Verification System (PVS) Portal and the operational mechanism for Bureau De Change Operations to enhance participation and liquidity.

Moreover, the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NGX) is considering listing dollar-denominated bonds and expanding into stocks, aiming to facilitate easier access to currency for businesses in the nation.

However, the actual state of the economy remains worrisome. Inflation has surged, with fuel prices more than tripling. The Naira has experienced consistent depreciation since the Nigerian government and the CBN implemented a float policy, losing nearly 50% of its value against the US dollar within a mere 10 weeks of its introduction.

While the CBN is determined to achieve price and exchange rate stability, skepticism persists among economists due to the country’s structural and budgetary challenges, which limit the effectiveness of the CBN’s available FX resources.

Copyright DAYBREAK.

All rights reserved. This material, and other digital content on this website, may not be reproduced, published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or in part without prior express written permission from DAYBREAK NEWS.

- Advertisement -

More articles


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

- Advertisement -

Latest article