Naira strengthens, now N483/$ in parallel market


By Salim Yunusa

The naira had a major recovery yesterday to close at N483 to a dollar, after being under pressure recently.

Yesterday’s rate made the naira stronger than the N502 to a dollar it has been trading at the black market in the past few days.

Forex dealers attributed the gain at the parallel market to improved supply of the greenback, resulting in speculators losing their shirts.

The President, Association of Bureaux De Change Operators of Nigeria (ABCON), Alhaji Aminu Gwadabe, had last week warned that forex speculators might lose over N100 billion in the next one month as the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) sustained funding for Bureaux De Change (BDC) operators.

Gwadabe had said the CBN was committed to improving funding for over 5,000 BDCs nationwide in a new move to deepen market liquidity and protect the naira against speculators.

He had called for the return of normalcy to the market, saying speculative behaviour hampering the market operations and stability would come at a huge loss to speculators.

He had also warned those hoarding dollars to profit from the currency crisis to desist.

“The ABCON and CBN have observed with disdain the speculative behaviour currently beclouding the market with the misinformation that the CBN has adopted the I&E window as its official rate,” he had said.

The CBN had a fortnight ago increased forex allocations to banks to meet the requests of customers, particularly travellers, seeking forex for travel allowances, payment of tuition and medical fees, among other Invisibles.

The moves followed the warning by the CBN Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, at a weekend meeting with bank managing directors, cautioning them to desist from denying customers, particularly travellers, the opportunity to purchase forex for Personal Travel Allowance (PTA), Basic Travel Allowance (BTA), tuition fees, and medical payments as well as Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) transactions or for the repatriation of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) proceeds.

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