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Will Oil Prices Help or Harm Nigeria’s Economy in Q3?

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By Lukman Otunuga, FXTM Research Analyst,

Global Oil prices looked tired, exhausted and ready for an early summer break during the second quarter of 2019 as global growth fears overshadowed supply disruptions and ongoing OPEC supply cuts. At the time of writing, Oil prices remain shaky and vulnerable despite OPEC+ latest decision to extend production cuts until March 2020.

The crucial question is whether Oil prices will ever recover and trade back towards the $70+ levels. That depends less on geopolitical tensions in the Middle East and more on whether the US and China can reach a trade deal, settling disputes over tariffs and opening the door to continued global growth. In this case, it’s likely that Oil prices will be injected with a renewed sense of confidence on the back of boosted global growth expectations and demand for Oil. But what if the current circumstances persist and the US-China trade disputes continue throughout the second half of 2019?

Taking each scenario one-by-one, starting with the upside for Oil prices, Nigeria’s economy could benefit considerably if a US-China trade deal is reached and global growth expectations become brighter. The manufacturing sectors in the US and China are the Oil-gobbling engines which drive demand for international Oil suppliers. China is the world’s top crude Oil consumer, importing more than 50 percent of its consumption, part of which comes from Nigeria. In the fourth quarter of 2018, Nigeria exported N23.5 billion worth of crude Oil to China and remains a major trading partner to the Asian giant. It’s likely that if China’s economy roars back to life, Nigeria’s growth would see more long-term support, benefiting foreign exchange reserves and the Naira. Although unlikely, if a trade deal were to be announced early in the quarter, it’s possible the nation’s 2019 budget would also see ample support from increased Oil revenues from China. This argument doesn’t apply to the US which has considerably reduced its crude Oil imports from Nigeria as it heads towards energy independence, relying instead on domestic production to meet its own needs.  

If you take the negative outlook on Oil, it’s more likely the rise in Oil prices is a temporary result of supply shortage fears and the prevalent trend in Q3 will be downward pressure from concerns over a global recession. In this unfavorable scenario, the world’s two largest economies do not reach a trade deal in the third quarter and aggregate demand for Oil continues falling as it tracks economic weaknesses in China and the US. As demand for Oil is whittled away, Nigeria’s foreign exchange reserves may be negatively impacted, along with the Naira, the 2019 budget and most importantly GDP growth. In terms of the national budget sheet, expenses like the petrol subsidy may take the limelight as they drag on revenues, overshadowing growth and threatening fiscal stability.

There’s another factor we haven’t talked about so far but it’s significant in terms of Oil market economics. Oil sales are denominated in US Dollars. Recently, the currency has weakened against its rivals, meaning that Oil is more affordable and possibly giving traders an incentive to snap up contracts at current levels before they rise further. If the Dollar bears have their way and the currency keeps declining, Oil price benchmarks could see further support in the third quarter. The impact of a weaker USD might not be as strong as a US-China trade deal, but it could feed positively into Nigeria’s Oil revenues and go some way to counter possible losses from ongoing global recession fears.

To sum up, Nigeria’s foreign exchange reserves, currency, growth and budget will face headwinds should trade disputes persist. However, provided the USD keeps weakening there’s scope for support from higher Oil prices based on bargain hunting. There’s always the possibility that the US and China could decide on a trade deal, if this happens sooner than later, Nigeria’s economy would benefit accordingly.


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Ugo Onwuaso is an ICT enthusiast. He believes technology should be used for general good. He holds a Master of Public Administration (MPA) degree from the Lagos state University.

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Unity Bank Unveils 2020 OMG Competition For Children

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In line with the efforts to drive the financial literacy initiatives of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Unity Bank Plc has unveiled its 2020 One Minute Genius (OMG) competition for children.

OMG is an educational gameshow to engage students as part of activities to commemorate Children’s Day.

According to a statement from the bank, over 120 winners are expected to emerge at the end of the 5-day contest that kicked off yesterday June 1, 2020, and run till Friday, June 5th, 2020.

The statement also said that  the competition can be monitored on Beat FM 99.9 Lagos, Beat FM Abuja, 94.1, and online on the Bank’s Website.

“The One Minute Genius is an initiative that underscores Unity Bank’s belief in children, it connects with the Nigerian children’s aspirations and reinforces the importance of education as a vehicle to empower the child to succeed beyond their wildest dreams.” The statement read.

Every Child and student between the ages of 6 –12 years are legible to participate in the game.

The idea is to enable the participant to improve their intelligent quotient and unleash the genius in them. The game will be played as a blend of quizzes containing spelling Bee and Arithmetic questions.

The children that answer the questions correctly within the one-minute stipulated timeframe will be rewarded with cash prizes.

Commenting on the initiative, Funwa Akinmade, Head, Retail and SME Banking, Unity Bank, said the One Minute Genius gameshow is a participatory learning and reward contest aimed at motivating students towards subject mastery using a branch of reinforcement model.

Akinmade urged parents and guardians to avail their wards the opportunity to participate in the competition.

In previous editions of Children’s Day engagement, the Bank hosted students of Kings College Lagos and held Spelling BEE competition to promote financial literacy, leadership, and advocacy against anti-social behaviour among youths.


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CBN Says Claims of N2,000, N5,000 Banknotes in Circulation Fake

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Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on Sunday, denied videos and pictures of the purported circulation of N2, 000 and N5,000 banknotes in the country.

CBN Says Claims of N2,000, N5,000 Banknotes in Circulation Fake

The apex bank in a tweet via the official Twitter handle are warned false and fake.

CBN called on Nigerians to disregard claims of such banknotes and urged members of the public to report anyone found in possession of such to law enforcement agencies.

Recall that in 2013, the CBN under the leadership of Sanusi Lamido Sanusi had said it was going to introduce a N5,000 banknote into the country.

Recently, the social media was abuzz after aman reportedly visited a bank and deposited the sum of N17m with yet to be designed or released N5000 and N2000 naira notes.

In accompany video, a lady could be heard in the clip, revealing how the man stormed the bank with the bundle of new 5000 and 2000 naira notes to deposit it.

 

 

 


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CBN Revises Timelines for ATM Dispense Errors, Refund Complaints

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Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has revised timelines for reversals and/or the resolution of refund complaints on electronic channels, with effect from June 8, 2020.

CBN Revises Timelines for ATM Dispense Errors, Refund Complaints

Mr. Godwin Emefiele, CBN governor

This is to further enhance service quality, particularly quick refunds when customers experience failed transactions, ATM dispense errors or disputes.

Isaac Okorafor, director, Corporate Communications of the apex bank said on Sunday that failed ‘On-Us’ ATM transactions (when customers use their cards on their bank’s ATMs) shall be instantly reversed from the current timeline of three days.

“Where instant reversal fails due to any technical issue or system glitch, the timeline for manual reversal shall not exceed 24 hours.

“Refunds for failed ‘Not-on-Us’ ATM transactions (where customers use their cards on other banks’ ATMs) shall not exceed 48 hours from the current three to five days.

“Resolution of disputed/failed PoS or Web transactions shall be concluded within 72 hours from the current five days.”

He added that all banks had been directed to resolve the backlog of all ATM, POS and Web customer refunds within two weeks starting June 8, 2020.

Meanwhile, key service providers in the Nigerian payments system have also committed to establish an integrated dispute resolution platform for the industry and enhance their payment system infrastructure and processes to reduce incidences of transaction failure.

Okorafor requested bank customers to refer to the updated Guidelines for the Operation of Electronic Payment Channels on the Bank’s website (www.cbn.gov.ng) for further details.

 

 

 


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