GTB Maintains Lead in Forex Allocation from CBN

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Obinna Chima

For the second week in a row, Guaranty Trust Bank Plc (GTB) maintained its lead garnering the highest allocation of foreign exchange from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), as last week’s figures have shown.

GTB with an allotment of $30,902,089.86 was followed by First Bank of Nigeria Limited (FirstBank), which got $19,610,855.76, to come in second, while Stanbic IBTC Limited with $19,206,106 held the third slot.

Zenith Bank Plc, which published returns of $16,823,160.04, came in fourth place, while Union Bank of Nigeria reported $15,602,956.71 to take the fifth place.

Also First City Monument Bank Limited (FCMB) reported returns of $14,273,731.24 to occupy the sixth place, Diamond Bank Plc with $13,929,883.10 came in seventh, Access Bank Plc reported returns of $13,698,086.72 to occupy the eighth slot, and Standard Chartered Bank Nigeria with $13,541,059.33 was ninth.

Standard Chartered was followed by Fidelity Bank – $11,152,667.93; United Bank for Africa Plc (UBA) – $11,152,667.93; Citibank Nigeria – $8,843,320.04; Sterling Bank Plc – $6,645,092.19; and Wema Bank Plc – $1,052,198.89.

The returns of forex utilisation across board once more revealed that school fees and business and personal travel allowances, in terms of volume, accounted for the highest number of allocations, while other invisibles such as repatriation of capital, divestments by foreign portfolio investors from the equities and bond markets, accounted for a large chunk of forex purchases, in terms of value.

For GTB, its returns revealed that, of the $31 million it got from the central bank, it sold $11.830 million (38 per cent) to Dangote Industries Limited for the payment of interest on the company’s syndicated facility.

In all, GTB had 328 customers on its list, both corporates and individuals. Of the total, the payment for school fees abroad got the highest allocation in terms of volume, but it also sold dollars to some of its corporate customers importing raw materials, petrol and diesel, among others. Also, Lufthansa and Air France bought dollars from GTB for their ticket sales’ remittances.

First Bank also sold dollars to a total of 767 customers – corporates and individuals. Of all its customers, Dangote Cement stood out, having bought $4.999 million from the bank. FirstBank also sold dollars for customers paying tuition, and those importing medical equipment, raw materials and industrial equipment.

Returns by Stanbic IBTC once more revealed the huge volume of outflow by foreign portfolio investors exiting the country. About 50 customers bought dollars from Stanbic IBTC to divest from the bond and equities markets.

Just like the preceding week, some of the portfolio investors included Northern Trust London, Milan/BNP Paribas, Deutsche Bank, London, Merill Lynch International, Bank of New York, and Standard Bank of New York.

Zenith Bank also sold dollars to 465 customers, largely for school fees and PTA, while some purchased dollars from the bank to import essential raw materials and other visible items.

Union Bank’s returns published for the last week of February and first week of March, accounted for the huge figures reported by the bank. Like its peers, it sold dollars for invisibles comprising school fees and PTA and also for the importation of essential industrial raw materials.

FCMB had 283 customers on its list. The bank sold dollars mostly to customers for PTA and for school payment abroad. Also, its corporate customers got dollars for the purchase of spare parts, pharmaceutical equipment such as infusion sets for needles, generators, and baby diapers, among others.

Overall, returns published by all the banks showed that demand for forex remained high, reflecting the country’s massive reliance on imported goods and services.

  • vic

    MATTERS OF THE MOMENT:

    13 MAJOR NIGERIAN BANKS ARE A TOTAL FOREX FRAUD

    GTB AMONG OTHER BANKS, IS A BANK OF FOREX FRAUD.

    IS IT NOT THE GTB WHICH BUYS FOREX AT N197 TO A DOLLAR FROM CENTRAL BANK AND SELLS THE SAME TO ITS CUTOMERS AT N320- 350 TO A DOLLAR????

    FOREX FRAUD IS PERPETRATED BY THE 13 MAJOR NIGERIAN BANKS. FEDERAL GOVERNMENT MUST MONITOR AND SCRUTINISE THEIR FOREX ACTIVITIES CLOSELY. IT IS THESE BANKS WHICH ARE AIDING AND ABETTING FOREX FRAUD AND DISTORTION OF FOREX RATES IN THE PARALLEL MARKET AND SABOTAGING THE EFFORTS OF PRESIDENT BUHARI TO MAKE NIGERIAN NAIRA STRONGER.

    THE ILLEGAL AND CLANDESTINE FOREX ACTIVITIES OF THESE MAJOR SHYLOCK NIGERIAN BANKS MUST BE STOPPED HENCEFORTH BEFORE THEY DO FURTHER DAMAGE TO NAIRA AND THE NIGERIAN ECONOMY.

    • Osakue

      WORKCHOP!

    • William Norris

      Just float the naira and all will be well.

      • vic

        i am not very sure of this strategy.

        • William Norris

          Why? Believe me it’s the ONLY solution. For many reasons.

          Government fixed prices NEVER work. Always creates SCARCITY.

          • vic

            please see my above reply to Artful Dodger for further insight into this matter.

          • William Norris

            Your reply indicates you’re not well informed on economics.

            1. Speculation on naira value is ENCOURAGED by the artificial fixed price set by government at 199/$.

            2. SAP was one of the best things to happen to Nigeria.

            3.Strong currency encourages CONSUMPTION, especially conspire of imports.

            4. Weak currency is an incentive for PRODUCTION.

            It’s not THEORY, those are real life economics that affect the lives of real people.

            I would advise you to read up on economics and especially SAP.

          • vic

            i think you need to join the world bank and imf who are responsible for ruining the economies of the developing countries to their own advantage. i think nigeria and well informed nigerians have gone past that stage.

          • William Norris

            LOL….Nigerians and their misapprehensions.

            The laws of economics have nothing to do with IMF, WB or the White man. Before any of them ever came to Africa, people were selling say yam in markets. Back in ancient pre-colonial Southern Nigeria, if two people set the same size yam side by side, buyers would usually choose the CHEAPER priced item. Lower price usually provokes higher sales. What does IMF have to do with that?

            Now what do you think will happen TODAY if the Federal Government makes a law to help the masses by –

            1. Getting government into the business of cultivating and producing yams

            2. Setting a cheap price for yam….say N10 per kg?

            What do you think will happen? I can assure you there will be YAM SCARCITY within 3 years. Then a BLACK MARKET will arise where people buy yams at night at higher prices.

            Nothing to do with IMF or WB. There ARE some areas where developing countries are disadvantaged by these institutions, just not in the matter of deregulation & privatization.

            Last, I still urge you to go read up on SAP. Did you know the one of the FIRST LAWS implemented under SAP?

    • Artful ºDodger

      Anyone whose life depends on the forex can have a heart attack over it. Every sane person around the globe think their country first unlike Nigeria who think everything foreign is sophistication. The forex market is an issues in Nigeria because Nigerians are a fake people who lead fake lifestyles!

      • vic

        Artful Dodger, you are very correct in your assertions. a vast majority of nigerians are traitors and worse than the foreigners. in collaboration with the cbn, it is the corrupt and fraudulent nigerian banks which are deliberately weakening the naira through their illicit business in the forex market.

        i remember as a young man in 1972, one nigerian pound used to buy around 2.5 us dollars. then my salary was only 70 nigerian pounds a month and with a small family, i could easily save 30 nigerian pounds a month.then there was no oil and nigerians cared about the then nigerian pound which had a lot of buying power. also, at the time there were a number of foreign supper stores like Leventis, Kingway etc chasing nigerian pounds to turn into multi-fold dollars at almost one nigerian pound to 2.5 dollars.

        the current exchange rate is an artificial distortion by these major banks, corrupt shylock businessmen who want to make quick bucks through dollar speculations rather than doing any honourable business and highly corrupt and fraudulent politicians sitting over BILLIONS of dollars, buried right under their bedrooms. honestly, even today, in actual fact, there is nothing wrong with naira but our greedy banks and greedy political system among others which repeatedly devalued naira under pressure from imf and world bank by politicians like military dictator babangida pressing ahead his so-called SAP programme.

        so, my boy, i hope you get some insight into it from the old man like me who has seen both sides of nigeria.

        now remember, do not be abusive, at least to me. make your point nicely and we will all listen to you on this forum without abusing back.

        i think, you are a clever, patriotic and a honest person and have good economic sense but your bad language and abuses hurled at your fellow commentators spoil your show.

        have a good and peaceful day.

  • Ogom

    “.. other invisibles such as repatriation of capital, divestments by foreign portfolio investors from the equities and bond markets, accounted for a large chunk of forex purchases, in terms of VALUE.”

    Spending on school fees, toothpicks and rice is not our problem.
    Plummeting investor confidence is what’s killing Nigeria.

    The FG is essentially spending most of its $ financing the exit of foreign investors fleeing a sinking ship. Yet they refuse to put in place a team and simple policies that would help boost investor confidence.

    This is #jihadieconomics, plain and simple – Rigid, dogmatic, backward and suicidal.

    • Artful ºDodger

      Do not argue nonsense dude, those investors were not adding any real value to Nigeria and if they want to leave they are free to do so. They are armchair traders who were only in to take and leave in the first place. With all the billions of dollars they made from Nigeria in the past how many Nigerians were they employing. Nigeria is better off with them gone.
      Only last few weeks a South African supermarket chain decided to put its investment in Nigeria on hold because of the forex situation in the country. What has that got to do with their business if they had plan to stock up and sell made in Nigeria goods? There plans must have been to bring in all their stock from South Africa at our expense while they sell and take the profits away in the name of foreign investors. Those are parasitic economic saboteurs Nigeria can do without thank you very much!

      • Ogom

        jihadi

  • Artful ºDodger

    Imagine Nigeria still importing diapers? Spending forex on the importation of diapers and people like Sanusi are still calling for devaluation? To support who, those importing diapers? And why are items like this not in the import prohibition list?
    Why is the CBN still selling dollars for those who destroyed Nigeria education sectors to train their children abroad?