External reserves drop by $1.4bn in two months

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The country’s external reserves fell by $1.4bn in two months, the latest data from the Central Bank of Nigeria showed on Wednesday.

The reserves, which stood at $35.25bn as of April 16, fell to $34.23bn as of May 31 and $33.85bn as of June 15.

Speaking on the decline in external reserves at the recent Monetary Policy Committee meeting, the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, said, “This reflects sales to the foreign exchange market and third-party payments.”

In March, the reserves lost $178m after dropping from $34.99bn as of March 1 to $34.82bn as of March 31.

In February, the reserves dropped by $1.1bn, falling from $36.19bn as of February 1 to $35.09bn on February 26.

The CBN, in its January economic report, said, “As a consequence of the lower foreign exchange receipts, the official external reserves declined.

“External reserves stood at $35.44bn at the end-January 2021, a decrease of 2.8 per cent and 3.5 per cent from $36.46bn in December 2020 and $36.73bn in January 2020.”

Meanwhile, the naira fell to 500 against the dollar at the parallel market on Wednesday from 495 last week.

Figures obtained from the naijabdcs.com, the Central Bank of Nigeria’s official website for the Bureau De Change operators, showed that the dollar was bought and sold for N499 and N500 respectively.

The CBN recently adopted the NAFEX rate of N410/$ as its the official exchange rate on its website.

SOURCE: PUNCH

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