Growth concerns mounting in Nigeria

Nigeria is facing an uphill battle to breathe life into its economic recovery. Following a sharp 6.1% y/y fall in GDP in Q2, more recent figures suggest that activity remains muted. Admittedly, Google mobility data suggest that visits to retail and recreation outlets returned to pre-crisis levels in September. But broader measures of activity, such as the whole economy PMI, only improved modestly last month. Meanwhile, OPEC+ oil production cuts continue to weigh heavily on the sector. Low oil prices are limiting the scope for fiscal support, reinforcing concerns about the outlook. The central bank did, admittedly, deliver another interest rate cut this month but further moves to clamp down on foreign currency transactions in a bid to prop up the naira are another bitter pill for investors to swallow.
William Jackson Chief Emerging Markets Economist
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Africa Economics Weekly

Recoveries trembling under new virus variant threat

A concerning new virus variant identified in Southern Africa has already prompted the re-imposition of restrictions on travellers from the region and triggered a flight to safety in global financial markets. A tightening of local containment measures is likely to follow, dampening economic activity, and the threat of a new virus wave will linger.
Drop-In: The B.1.1.529 strain – The economic and markets impact 10:00 ET/15:00 GMT, Friday 26th November Group Chief Economist Neil Shearing will be joined by senior economists from across our services at 10:00 ET/15:00 GMT today to give their views and answer your questions about the potential economic and markets impact of this new virus strain. Click here to register and to submit your questions ahead of the session. 

26 November 2021

Africa Economics Update

CBN maintains interest rates, but hints at policy shift

The Central Bank of Nigeria kept its benchmark rate on hold at 11.50% today, but the statement signalled that monetary policy normalisation is now on the horizon. While we don’t expect interest rates to be raised imminently, we have pencilled in 200bp of hikes over 2022-23.

23 November 2021

Africa Economics Weekly

African central banks and the EM rate hike club

This week, the South African Reserve Bank joined its EM counterparts in tightening monetary policy, but we don’t think that policymakers in South Africa will raise interest rates as aggressively as central banks across Emerging Europe and Latin America. Elsewhere, a further fall in inflation last month and soft Q3 GDP figures mean that Nigeria’s central bank is unlikely to join the EM rate hike club any time soon.

19 November 2021

More from William Jackson

Emerging Europe Data Response

Russia Consumer Prices (Jun.)

The further rise in Russian inflation to a stronger-than-expected 6.5% y/y in June means the central bank (CBR) is likely to up the pace of tightening when it meets in a couple of weeks. A 75bp hike (to 6.25%) seems most likely, but the probability of an even larger 100bp hike has risen.

7 July 2021

Emerging Markets Economics Update

EM credit growth: where do the risks lie?

With the (usual) exception of Turkey, the strong rates of credit growth seen in some EMs including Brazil and Korea are unlikely to be sustained as policymakers have already started (or will soon turn to) tightening policy. The bigger concern is the extreme weakness of credit growth in other EMs such as Mexico and the Philippines, which threatens to further hold back economic recoveries.

6 July 2021

Latin America Data Response

Brazil Industrial Production (May)

The 1.4% m/m rise in Brazilian industrial production in May only partially reversed the falls in output in the three preceding months. And while surveys point to a stronger reading in June, the sector was probably a drag on q/q GDP growth over Q2 as a whole.

2 July 2021
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