29 Aug

Daily Watch – Federal pie shrinks, Dangote Rice to the rescue

  • The allocative revenue accruing to the federal, states and local governments dropped by ₦65 billion in July, from the ₦559 billion figure realised in June, according to the finance ministry. Reuters reports that militant attacks had hit oil revenues hard, leading to a decline in distributable revenue among the three tiers of government to ₦494 billion in July. The distributable revenues included value added tax payments of ₦64.308 billion.
  • The naira fell to a new low of 414 against the United States dollar on Sunday, losing ₦15 in three days amid a continued scarcity of foreign exchange in the country. The naira’s renewed dive came five days after the CBN had banned nine commercial banks from the interbank market for failing to remit the NNPC’s $2.334bn into the Treasury Single Account in line with President Muhammadu Buhari’s directive in September 2015. The currency had hit an all-time low of 412 against the greenback at the parallel market on Friday, after closing at 409/dollar on Thursday. The worst-performing currency this year among more than 150 globally has depreciated 37 percent against the dollar since the central bank abandoned its peg on June 20.
  • The CBN is scheduled to auction Treasury bills worth ₦212.85 billion in what is seen by analysts as a potential boost to activities in the fixed income space. “We anticipate increased activities in the fixed income space this week, on the back of the scheduled auction of T-bill instruments,” analysts at Meristem Securities said in the firm’s weekend markets analysis. Other analysts say it a good time to buy Nigerian one-year Treasury bills, with yields of about 22 percent, Stuart Culverhouse, chief economist at Exotix, wrote in an August 9 note. The potential return is more than 33 percent if the naira strengthens to its fair value of 290 against the greenback, he said. Equity performance painted a muted picture with the All-Share Index appreciating on three out of five trading days, paring its weekly loss to 0.72 percent, leaving its year-to-date return at -4.16 per cent.
  • Dangote is set to release a packaged bag of rice product as the company commences the harvest of its first tranche of rice seedlings. The Daily Trust cites company sources as saying the company and its billionaire founder, Aliko Dangote is confident the product’s release will lead to a significant reduction in the price of rice bags, currently at a historic average of ₦20,000 a bag. Earlier in the year, Dangote Rice inaugurated its 8,000-hectare rice out-growers’ scheme in Hadejia, Jigawa, with the distribution of rice seedlings to farmers. The program, it says had the potential to provide 10,000 direct and indirect jobs and would be replicated in six other states.
  • The SEC has directed all capital market operators who have not registered with their trade group/association to do so on or before October 31 or face sanctions. The directive comes as the regulator seeks to enshrine market reforms designed to foster a more responsive complaint management framework that requires the SEC, self-regulatory organisations and capital market trade groups/associations to establish objective complaints management policies for the handling of investor complaints.
  • 2016 has seen a steady decline in the value of monthly cheque transactions in the country, sliding from ₦501.166 billion in February to ₦488.627 billion in June. A new NIBSS report showed that cheque transactions worth of ₦464.553 billion were carried out in January; ₦501.166 billion in February; and ₦487.572 billion in March. In the second quarter, cheque transactions worth ₦472.465 billion in April, ₦480.409 billion in May and ₦488.627 billion in June were executed; the report highlighting the fact that Nigerians were moving away from traditional cheque transactions to more convenient electronic channels of completing financial transactions.