Nigeria's Central Bank Bans the Reselling of Dollars

Cape Times (South Africa), February 16, 2015 | Go to article overview

Nigeria's Central Bank Bans the Reselling of Dollars


BYLINE: Chijioke Ohuocha and Oludare Mayowa Lagos

NIGERIA'S Central Bank banned banks on Friday from reselling dollars bought at a currency auction to other banks, dealers said, a move aimed at curbing speculation in the beleaguered naira currency.

The naira has crashed through the psychologically important level of 200 to the dollar this week in a rout triggered by weak oil prices and escalating tension over the postponement of a presidential election in Africa's biggest economy.

The central bank has pledged to stabilise the naira and has been deploying various measures to help strengthen the naira and meet demand for the greenback.

On Friday, trading was delayed until after 9am to allow dealers to submit demand for dollars to the central bank, the head of the Financial Markets Dealers Association (FMDA) said.

The central bank then injected dollars into the market in what David Adepoju, the president of the FMDA - the club of 40 banks, discount houses and brokerages that regulates the market - described as "a special forex auction".

But dealers said the central bank then banned lenders from selling dollars sourced from it. The central bank had said the move would not be a one-off, Adepoju said.

"There is no longer price discovery on the naira. With the special auction you should be able to buy and sell, no matter where the market is," one dealer said. …

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