The naira dipped slightly against the United States dollar at the interbank segment of the forex market due to an increase in the demand for the greenback.
Even an increase in dollar supply at the regulated Wholesale Dutch Auction System (WDAS) was unable to assuage the demand for dollar at the interbank.
Data made available by the Financial Market Dealers Association (FMDA), showed that the naira slipped by 13 kobo to close at 157.53 to a dollar on the interbank market yesterday, compared with the N157.40 to a dollar it closed on Friday.
Dealers attributed the development to demand for the greenback by oil marketers and other traders. The local currency however maintained the N155.75 to a dollar it was at the WDAS, even as the central bank increased its dollar supply to the 16 banks that participated in the auction to $180 million yesterday, compared with the $120 million it offered last Wednesday.
But only $162.221 million out of the total amount was sold. Some dealers disclosed that Shell sold some dollars toward the end of trading yesterday, but the amount supplied to the interbank market was not enough to support the naira. At the parallel market, the naira was also stable at N159 to a dollar.
Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mallam Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, at the weekend revealed that the Bank would soon stop selling forex in cash to Bureaux de Change (BDCs).
The new policy, he said, was informed by the fact that forex sold by the BDCs is not used for transactions outside Nigeria, but rather used to move money around the country.
Meanwhile, commenting on the impact of plans to lower domestic debt in the 2013 appropriation bill that was presented to the National Assembly last week, analysts at Renaissance Capital (RenCap) argued that it would bring about less upward pressure on interest rates.
“Nigeria’s share of domestic debt in total debt (at 80 per cent) is significantly higher than the government’s policy target of 60 per cent. The budget plan proposes turning this around by adopting a domestic debt strategy that, for the first time, will pay off Nigeria’s domestic debt instead of rolling it over.
“To this end, a sinking fund of N100 billion ($63 million) will be set up in 2013 that will be used to repay maturing debt obligations and stem the rise in domestic debt. New domestic borrowing will also moderate to N727 billion in 2013, from N744 billion in 2012. We expect a slowdown in domestic borrowing to ease upward pressure on interest rates, which we view as positive for credit growth,”
Capation: Diamond Bank office
Diamond Bank Disburses N65bn to Micro Entrepreneurs in 4 years
Amby Uneze in Owerri
Diamond Bank Plc said that it has disbursed a total of N65 billion through her micro, small, medium Enterprises scheme (MSME) since inception of the proposition in 2009.
The financial institution also stated that over 8,000 entrepreneurs have been assisted with about 12,000 businesses across the country, even as a call has gone to investors in the South East to invest in the equities market for expansion.
Stating this in Owerri during the bank’s 25th Business Express Enterprise Series, the Head, MSME, Diamond Bank, Mr. Chima Nnadozie, said the amount given out so far have been gradually repaid by the beneficiaries, adding that an outstanding loan of N35 billion were still not paid yet, but commended the efforts of the entrepreneurs for living up to expectation.
The major reason for the seminar, Nnadozie said, was to expand the knowledge of their entrepreneurs so that they could face challenges in doing business, adding that when their businesses progress, they would invest in the bank and both outfits would grow.
“We felt that we need to gather them together to be able to talk to them on how to manage their businesses well, so that in the long run, they would become better customers. We do this because if their businesses grow, we equally will grow. The format is that we bring in any successful businessman in that state who shares his experiences to the entrepreneurs”, he said.
According to him, Diamond Bank is one of the banks that lend certain amount of money to customers (small businesses) without collaterals, “we do this because we believe that such customers would not forget us when they grow in business,” he added.
In his lecture titled: ‘Handling Prospects and Challenges in Growing a business’, the Managing Director of Camela Vegetable Oil Limited, Chief Okey Ikoro, challenged businessmen in the South East to invest in the stock market for business expansion.
According to him, a major problem affecting the growth of businesses in the South East is lack of collaboration, adding when a business is growing there is the need to raise funds through the equities market or invite other interested hands to join in order to make it bigger.
Ikoro identified accessibility, commercial value as issues to note importantly when establishing a business, stressing that persistence and good planning leads to growth in business.