Naira Sheds 0.27 Pct As Oil Price Continues To Fall

Money_newNigeria naira slipped 0.27 percent on Monday amid a shortage of dollars on the interbank market, as higher demand coupled with declining global oil prices .

The naira closed at 163.85 to the dollar, below the three-month low of 163.45 naira it touched a week ago.

The naira closed at 163.40 on Friday.

“Dollar demand from politicians holding their assets in hard currency ahead of elections next year has increased pressure on the local currency,” one dealer said.

The central bank was selling dollars directly on the interbank market to try to prop up the currency, which has shed almost 3.5 percent this year, for most of last week.

On Monday, the local unit of Royal Dutch Shell sold an undisclosed amount of dollars to some lenders, which was not enough to support the naira.

The naira has “depreciated substantially” on the interbank market in the past two months, Central Bank Governor, Godwin Emefiele, noted during last Friday’s interest-rate-setting meeting, citing risks from declines in global oil prices and domestic production.

Brent crude oil fell below $98 a barrel on Monday, dropping for the third session in four, as sluggish demand and ample supplies outweighed expectations of a cut in oil output from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC).

Dealers expect dollar sales by multinational oil companies as they meet their month-end domestic obligations to provide some support for the naira in the days ahead.

FG approves N34 billion for accrued pension payment

The federal government has approved the sum of N34 billion for the payment of accrued retirees’ entitlement.

The elderly on a queue for their deserved life long toil

This was made known by the National Pensions Commission (PENCOM)on Friday.

According to PENCOM, the payment is for those who have registered with the Pension Fund Administrators, under the Contributory Pension Scheme.

According to PENCOM, the approval was given by the Minister of Finance and Coordinating Minister for the economy, Dr.Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, following the submission of the National Pensions Commission to the Senate.

It would be recalled that the Senate, earlier in the year investigated the allegations of fraud in the pensions industry.