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CBN remains fixated on supporting the recovery

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) kept its benchmark rate on hold at 11.50% today as it shrugged off the unexpected rise in inflation in December and maintained its focus on supporting the recovery. We think that the current accommodative policy stance is unlikely to change in the coming months, but rate hikes will probably come onto the agenda in the second half of 2022.
Virag Forizs Emerging Markets Economist
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Africa Economics Update

CBN finally steps up to curb inflation

The Central Bank of Nigeria delivered a surprise 150bp interest rate hike, to 13.00%, today amid mounting inflation and balance of payments concerns. We expect rates to be raised by another 100bp, to 14.00%, in July but further tightening seems unlikely especially as the 2023 elections come into view.

24 May 2022

Africa Data Response

Nigeria GDP (Q1)

Nigeria’s GDP growth slowed to 3.1% y/y in Q1 as robust growth in the non-oil sector was more than offset by a slump in the oil sector. Looser fiscal policy ahead of elections in early 2023 will provide some support to activity going forward, but continued weakness in oil production and disruptions caused by draconian FX policies underpin our below-consensus forecast for growth of 2.3% over 2022 as a whole.

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Africa Economics Weekly

Markets and monetary policy, mounting pressure on naira

Recent investor risk-off sentiment has pushed up sovereign dollar bond yields across Sub-Saharan Africa, fuelling debt risks further, and has put currencies under pressure. Central banks appear to be taking note, with some policymakers turning tightening cycles up a notch. In Nigeria, the recent weakness of the currency on the black market was attributed to election-related spending, but the bigger issue is that downward pressure on the naira stems from the central bank’s unorthodox FX policies.

20 May 2022

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Africa Economics Weekly

Balance on South African MPC tipping towards rate hike

A raft of recent economic developments have shaken up our near-term views on monetary policy in South Africa, and we now expect a 25bp rate hike at next week’s MPC meeting. However, our forecasts for the next 12-18 months are still more dovish than most investors'.

21 January 2022

Africa Data Response

South Africa Consumer Prices (Dec.)

South Africa’s inflation rate rose to a stronger-than-expected 5.9% y/y in December, probably tilting the Reserve Bank more in favour of continuing to tighten monetary policy. But with soft core price pressures and an Omicron-driven virus wave clouding the recovery, this month’s decision is likely to be a close call. Further out, we think that interest rates will rise more slowly than investors currently expect.

19 January 2022

Africa Data Response

Nigeria Consumer Prices (Dec.)

The surprise rise in inflation in Nigeria, to 15.6% y/y in December, will more likely than not prove to be a blip. We don’t think that policymakers will rush to raise interest rates in response.

17 January 2022
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