Experts predict 11.5 % lending rate as MPC ends meeting

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The Monetary Policy Committee is expected to retain the lending rate after its two-day meeting which ends on Tuesday (today), according experts.

After the last meeting in March, the MPC retained the Monetary Policy Rate at 11.5 per cent.

It also retained the Cash Reserve Ratio and Liquidity Ratio at 27.5 per cent and 30 per cent respectively.

A professor of economics, Babcock University and past President, Chartered Institute of Bankers of Nigeria, Prof. Segun Ajibola, said he expected retention of the rates.

He said, “I expect retention because I have not seen major shift in the fundamentals, the liquidity ratio, the cash reserve ratio, the MPR.

“If you look at the money market instruments, the treasury bills, the bonds, one has not seen significant changes in those parameters.

“Where we are is not the best because as at today, the money market is still bleeding, especially many players who have staked their lifetime earnings with those products are really suffering because with inflation of close to 20 per cent, some are earning two, three per cent returns.

“The real interest rate is negative, and to compound the situation, exchange rate devaluation is also staring everybody in the face; so it is losing from both sides.

“It is affecting the vulnerable members of the economy. The real income is declining on a daily basis. I don’t see how MPR can help. So, they are likely to retain the status quo.”

A former President, Association of National Accountants of Nigeria, Dr Sam Nzekwe said, “Things will remain the same because there is nothing much happening in the economy as to start thinking whether they are going to increase the MPR. I don’t expect any change.”

 SOURCE: PUNCH

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