Headlines news for the day.

Equities end holiday-shortened week with N375bn gain

The Nigerian equities market ended the week’s trading session in the green, gaining about N375billion. Investors traded for only three days in the review week to Friday, July 23. The market had closed for two days (Tuesday and Wednesday) as Muslim faithful and Nigerians marked this year’s Eid-el-Kabir celebration.

Thanks to investors who showed interest in shares of Total Nigeria Plc, Dangote Cement Plc and Oando Plc, among others which helped push market up by 1.90percent. Market sentiment in the week was majorly driven by impressive half year (H1) earnings releases and other company specific information like Oando which settled its rift with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

Investors rushed to buy shares of Total Nigeria ahead of qualification date for the proposed N1.36billion interim dividend.
Except NGX Insurance index (-0.74percent), all other key sectoral indices closed the week in green. NGX Banking Index increased by 0.44percent, NGX Consumer Goods Index (+0.57percent), NGX Industrial Index (+4.06percent), NGX Oil & Gas Index recorded the highest weekly rise by +7.53percent while NGX Pension Index closed the week positively by +1.64percent.

As investors continued to trade in line with corporate earnings release the market closed positively in line with earlier expectations. The market’s negative return year-to-date (ytd) decreased remarkably to -3.98percent. The market has rallied by 2.01 percent in July.

The Nigerian Exchange Limited (NGX) All-Share Index (ASI) and Market Capitalisation opened the week in review at 37,947.18 points and N19.771 trillion respectively but closed at 38,667.9 points and N20.146trillion.

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Nigeria, others to benefit as UK considers new trade scheme for growth

The UK Government has launched a consultation on new trading rules that will help countries like Nigeria grow its trade and and help British businesses and consumers at the same time. The UK Developing Countries Trading Scheme (DCTS) is a major opportunity to grow free and fair trade with developing nations

Tinapa, Dangote refinery, federal might and our terms of endearment

Many would agree that the Dangote Refinery and the Tinapa projects both testify to their respective promoters’ desire to break new ground and their skill at galvanising a multidisciplinary team behind that dream; while also deftly combining massive private investment with active and significant support from the Federal Government (FG)

Nigeria napping as $173trn energy transition opportunity opens

The world will need to invest $173 trillion in energy transition systems to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, opening up new opportunities for the energies of the future, a new study has found

 

Oil gains as markets tighten on robust global demand

There is yet brighter prospects for Nigeria’s fiscal position as oil closed higher Thursday amid expectations that recovering demand from the U.S. to India and Europe will further tighten global crude markets

 

 

Lagos NURTW Generates N123bn Annually – Report

 The Lagos chapter of the National Union of Road Transport Workers, locally called agberos, generates about N123.08bn annually which could service the annual budget of Nasarawa, Niger, and Yobe states put together, a statistical report by the International Centre for Investigative Report has shown

 

CBN Targets October 1 for Digital Currency Launch

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) yesterday disclosed that its much-anticipated digital currency will be launched on October 1.

CBN Director, IT Department, Mrs. Rakiya Mohammed, revealed this during a private webinar, explaining that the banking sector regulator had been conducting research towards the launch of digital currencies since 2017.

She added that the central bank may conduct a proof of concept before the end of the year.

The move to adopt the electronic currency was first disclosed by the CBN Governor, Mr. Godwin Emefiele, during the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) in May.

He had said a digital currency will soon become a reality in the country, adding that the central bank had already set up its committee which was working on the concept.

The CBN governor had further restated the determination of the apex bank to drive the e-Naira project during the recent 306th Banker’s Committee meeting, pointing out that the process was ongoing.

Mohammed was quoted by Nairametrics to have highlighted the benefits of the digital currency, saying it would enhance macroeconomic management, boost economic growth, facilitate cross border trade, boost financial inclusion and monetary policy effectiveness.

Mohammed said the digital payment instrument would further improve payment efficiency, revenue tax collection, remittance improvement, and targeted social intervention.

She added that the innovation would also benefit the fintech ecosystem by enhancing operational efficiency, opportunities for fintech start-ups in building services and products as well as financial inclusion that will contribute to economic growth, and the creation of a new system complimenting the traditional payment system.

Mohammed had last month said the proposed digital would be launched before December.

According to her, every Nigerian would have access to the digital currency.

She had while briefing journalists at the end of a Bankers’ Committee meeting said: “Let me state categorically that cryptocurrency such as Bitcoin and the rest of them are not under the control of the central bank; they are purely private decisions that individuals make and are not part of this arrangement.

“We have spent over two years studying this concept of central bank’s digital currency and we have identified the risks. And it is one of the reasons why I said we are setting up a central governance structure that would involve all industry stakeholders to access all the risks as we continue on this journey.

“Very soon we would make an announcement on the date for the launch and by the end of the year, we should have the digital currency.”

According to her, about 80 percent of central banks across the world are presently exploring the possibility of issuing the central bank’s digital currency, saying that Nigeria cannot be left behind.

Mohammed had added: “You are aware that we have two forms of fiat money: The notes and the coins. So, the central bank’s digital currency is the third form of fiat money. So, this digital money is going to complement the cash and note that we have.

“The central bank digital currency will just be as good as you having cash in your pocket. So, if you are having the currency in your pocket, you are as good as having cash on your phone.

“Now, why did we need to go into this? There are different cases that the central bank is looking at.

For instance, we have remittances, which is a huge market in Africa. We also know that in the last EFInA report, our target for this year was to achieve 80 percent financial inclusion. We are about 60 percent and at the rate we are going, it is unlikely we would meet this target. But the central bank digital currency would accelerate this target”.

She said it would support the cashless policy as well as innovation, adding that the central bank has a “very clear roadmap on this and we are about to move to the next stage of proof of consent after which we would start a pilot”.

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First Ideas Limited is an investment and financial advisory company established in 1994 to provide advisory services to high net worth individuals, trust funds, financial institutions and medium sized companies in growth sectors.

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