Expectations from the Markets this Week – 211122
UK Finance Minister Announces Austere Measures, Analysts See UK shrinking in 2023
Chancellor of the UK Treasury, Jeremy Hunt on Thursday Morning released the government’s autumn budget statement which details several austere measures and higher taxes needed to offset an estimated fiscal hole of £55bn and to keep social services running. The current energy price guarantee (EPG) which caps the average yearly energy bill at £2,500 will be replaced next April with a £3,000 cap which would last a further 12 months. Hunt also stated that Pensions would rise by whichever is higher of the CPI inflation rate, and the growth rate on wages. Analysts say that this would mean that Pensions would increase by £870 by April 2023. Meanwhile, Income tax and NICs thresholds which were already frozen until 2026, will now remain so until 2028. Analysts believe this, as well as the decision to reduce the higher income tax bracket threshold from £150,000 to £125,140, will bring more people into higher tax. With the UK officially in a recession analysts project the economy will shrink further by 1.4% in 2023, but Inflation is expected to peak next year.
US Retail Sales, Layoffs, and Inflation signal another Fed Rate Hike
US Retail sales surged by 1.3% in October, the largest monthly gain since February indicating that consumers have continued to spend despite inflation. According to official data from the Census Bureau on Wednesday, shoppers spent more than expected in October on items such as gas, groceries, furniture, and cars while leaning on more on credit. Analysts had forecast a 1% increase in retail sales due to elevated inflation. On Thursday, the Department of Labour announced that the number of new layoffs in the week ending November 12, was 222,000, a decrease of 4,000 from the previous week’s revised level. Piecing the data together, Analysts believe that while the Fed would go hawkish in its December meeting, taking the strong labor market and credit-assisted retail sales growth as an impetus to continue to prioritize tamping down inflation. US Inflation is declining but still at a record-high of 7.7% as of October.
Japan’s economy contracts, Stokes Recession Fears
Japan’s economy unexpectedly shrank for the first time in a year when Gross domestic product fell by 1.2% in Q3 2022, on the back of a weaker yen and higher import costs both of which took a toll on household consumption and businesses. Despite lifting Covid restrictions, Japan has faced intensifying pressure from red-hot global inflation, interest rate increases globally and the Ukraine war. Japan’s contraction stoked greater fears of a global recession, but analysts say the data was a blip as the three main planks of demand remain in place. Economists look forward to a series of S&P Global/CIPS Flash PMI, Manufacturing & Services releases, and GDP figures from Germany next week to gauge the state of the global economy
Nigeria’s inflation rises to 21.09%, MPC to Raise Rates Again
Headline inflation rose to 21.09% in October 2022. According to the consumer price index (CPI) report released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), inflation increased 32bp from 20.77% in September. October’s inflation came in better than expected, as Analysts had forecast a CPI growth of between 20.3% and 20.6%. Month-on-month inflation, however, came in at 1.24% in October, moderating further from 1.36% in September, reflecting the impact of the CBN’s hawkish monetary action. Food inflation rose to 23.72% from 23.34% in September, reflecting the impact of the flooding, which affected many farming communities and disrupted economic activities in 30 of 36 states. The Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) is expected to raise rates further in its November meeting, billed to take place next week to tamp down record-high inflation.
Nigeria Sees 63% of Citizens Experience Multidimensional Poverty
In collaboration with many international agencies on Thursday, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) released Nigeria’s Multidimensional Poverty Report (2022). The report, first released in 2018 as part of the Human Development Report, included an additional variable to track the trends in multidimensional poverty and some of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which found that 63% of Nigerians are multi-dimensionally poor. The report considers such metrics as Food insecurity, Time to Healthcare, Nutrition, unemployment etc. Analysts note that government policy needs to be focused on increasing growth in elastic job sectors and reducing inequality by creating macroeconomic stabilizers and social safety nets. Poverty reduction strategies in Nigeria have failed to achieve their desired objective due to a lack of commitment on the part of the government, corruption and bureaucratic bottlenecks, all of which must be addressed if the country would record improvement in its poverty.
UN DESA Estimates Nigeria’s Population at 216 million, Analysts Worry about Population Explosion
According to the latest World Population Prospects Report, 2022, released on Tuesday by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA), Nigeria’s population has reached 216 million as of 2022. This makes Nigeria the 6th most populous country in the world. Analysts believe that the country’s large population presents it with opportunities and challenges. With the populations of 61 countries or areas projected to decrease by 1% or more between 2022 and 2050, the Migration policies of developed countries would relax further to attract skilled workers from Low Income developing countries. Analysts however note that without corresponding investment in education, health care and infrastructure the rising population portends rising poverty and unemployment.
FG plans to add 3,658km to railway routes; Analysts State the Need for Security
At the 2nd International Railway Conference in Abuja, organised by the Abuja Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Minister of Transportation, Muazu Sambo, disclosed that the Federal Government (FG) has carried out feasibility studies on another 3,658km of railway routes in the different parts of the country which is considered viable for development. The FG, which has made railway infrastructure one of its major planks, has completed the 326km Itakpe-Ajaokuta-Warri rail line and railway ancillary facilities; the 156.5km Lagos-Ibadan standard gauge railway modernization project with extension to Lagos Port, Apapa. The 3658km of railway routes are intended to be inter-city mass transit rail services along Lagos, Abeokuta, Ibadan Oshogbo, Ilorin, Minna, Kaduna, and Kano corridors. Analysts, however, note that the spate of insecurity across the country has threatened the operations of the Nigeria Railway Corporation (NRC). Analysts, therefore, call on the government to address the challenge of banditry and kidnapping, rendering the government’s infrastructural investment unproductive. Appreciating the enormous opportunities inherent in the potential privatization of the NRC, Analysts have called for the listing of the NRC on the stock market.
Oil and Gas
OPEC MOMR: Nigeria’s Crude Oil Production Rebound above 1mb/d
The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) Monthly Oil Market Report (MOMR) for November 2022 shows that crude oil production increased mainly in Nigeria and Iraq among the thirteen OPEC members. Nigeria’s oil production based on direct communication increased by 77,000 barrels per day (b/d) M-o-M from 937,766b/d in September 2022 to 1.014mb/d. Similarly, the country’s crude oil production increased by 33,000b/d M-o-M from 1.025mb/d in September 2022 to 1.057mb/d in October 2022, based on secondary sources.
Meanwhile, the country’s rig count (a metric for drilling activities in the upstream sector) rose from seven units in September to eight in October 2022. Analysts attributed the increase to Shell’s resumption of crude oil export from Bonny and Forcados terminals, where output increased significantly and to the supposed decline in crude oil theft due to the surveillance projects by the NNPC Limited and its security services partners. With the recorded increase in rig count and the continuous surveillance of the country’s oil infrastructure, analysts expect production to increase for the rest of the year.
Finance Minister Announces Subsidy Removal in H1 2023
Nigeria’s Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, at a press briefing marking the closure of the 28th National Economic Summit, disclosed that the Federal Government will remove the petrol subsidy by June 2023. Although several promises have been made on subsidy removal in the past, analysts expect the new timeline to materialize given the severity of the subsidy on the country’s fiscal policy and as a new administration takes on the country’s governance. Howbeit, immediate phase removal is recommended to moderate the effect on Nigerians. Meanwhile, analysts questioned the subsidy budget at N3.3trn for H1 2023, given that the subsidy value between January to August 2022 came in at N2.57trn despite the high crude oil prices.
Experts Observe that Dollarization of Local Oil Transactions Hurt Oil Marketers
Over the weekend, oil marketers under the aegis of the Depots and Petroleum Products Marketers Association of Nigeria (DAPPMAN) again reiterated their calls for the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) and the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) to accept ports charges in naira rather than dollars. Operators in the industry noted that despite the deal brokered by the downstream regulator, NNPC Ltd, and major stakeholders for payment of port charges in naira, most transactions and charges are still made in dollars.
In effect, sustained strengthening of the greenback against the naira raises the cost of petroleum importation and the associated transaction charges. This eats into the already thin margin of marketers and makes retailing at the regulated pump price unsustainable. Analysts believe oil market operators would not have access to dollars at the official rates, unlike the NNPC Ltd. But a viable respite should be an executive order de-dollarizing all transactions and charges within the industry in the domestic market.
Abandoned Gas Projects Constrain Nigeria’s Supply Capacity
Analysts have attributed the abandonment of Brass and Olokola LNG projects and the slow development of the NLNG trains to Nigeria’s failure to bridge the gas supply gap to Europe occasioned by the Russian invasion of Ukraine. This is further compounded by the country’s distance from the European market (compared with Morocco and Algeria) and the lack of operational infrastructure to make the deliveries. Brass and Olokola LNG projects have stalled due to the withdrawal of some IOC partners on concerns around the project viability and investment justification, causing a delay in the final investment decision (FID). Analysts advocated the adoption of the ownership and operating model of the NLNG in other public oil and gas projects and possible listing on the equity market.
A New Floating LNG Plant to Boost Nigeria’s Gas Supply and Revenue
Against the backdrop of slowly recovering oil and gas output, Analysts expect the UTM floating LNG plant to promote the monetization of Nigerian gas, increase export delivery to Europe, increase Nigeria’s energy security, and boost economic activities in the country. Partners to the project, including UTM Offshore Limited, JGC Corporation, Technip Energies, and Kellogg Brown & Root (KBR) Engineering Companies, on Thursday, signed a Front-End Engineering Design (FEED) contract for the construction of the US$5bn LNG Floating plant, the first ever in Nigeria. The 1.52m tonnes per annum facility, processing 176m standard cubic feet (SCF) of natural gas and condensate per day, will aid the exploration and development of Nigeria’s 209trn SCF of proven gas. Analysts expect the project to beat the legacy challenges in the industry, given that it is AFREXIM funded, and its offshore nature makes it a cheaper and more flexible alternative to traditional facilities.
OPEC Releases its Oil Demand Forecast
OPEC has cut its global oil demand growth forecast for 2022 and 2023 for the fifth time in eight months on mounting economic challenges, including high inflation, rising interest rates, high sovereign debt, tight labour markets, and supply chain constraints. The organization trimmed demand growth for both years by 100,000b/d. It expects demand to grow by 2.55mb/d to an average of 99.6mb/d in 2022 and by 2.24mb/d to an average of 101.8mb/d in 2023. While Analysts see downside risks in covid-19 restrictions in China and the looming global recession, moderating inflation in some economies and the likely resolution of the geopolitical tension in Eastern Europe may portend some optimism.
Oil Prices Fall but Maintain Range
Although a temporal reversal occurred on Friday on a weak dollar, oil prices dipped for the week on concerns about weakening demand in China and continuous interest rate hikes by the US Federal Reserve. The recession concerns from the Chinese covid cases and rate hikes dominated the looming EU ban on Russian crude oil and OPEC’s tightness policy. While oil prices broke their support level, trading below US$90 per barrel towards the weekend, Analysts expect oil prices to rebound in the near term on tight supply and easing restrictions in China. In the local fuel market, analysts expect further volatility in the prices of petrol amidst the tight supply.
Brent had a weekly decline of -10.04% (see Table 1).
Gold declined by -4.15% and Silver declined by -10.17% W-o-W (see Table 1).
Cocoa prices declined by -3.26% W-o-W.
Corn prices advanced by +1.44% W-o-W and Sugar prices advanced by +2.49% (see Table 1).
Table 1: Commodity Prices
|Commodity||18-Nov-22||11-Nov-22||31-Dec-21||Weekly Chg||YTD Chg|
*Data for the 18th of November 2022 is as of 04: 02 pm (Nigerian Time)
African Leaders Explore Ways to Scale up Agriculture at COP27 as India Kicks Against Linking Emissions to Farming.
At COP27, African ministers have spoken about ways to improve agriculture on the continent, discussing some of the challenges and solutions to help Africa achieve food security. Some problems include access to finance from banks, disasters and geopolitical conflict. Africa needs to adapt its way of agriculture to be able to meet the demand of its people. Rwanda achieved some successes in food production because of its policy involving farmers, citizens, the private sector and civil society in implementing agricultural policies. African Development Bank (AfDB) President Dr. Akinwumi Adesina cited many AfDB initiatives to drive food sovereignty, including the Technology for African Agricultural Transformation initiative, which has enabled Ethiopia to become self-sufficient in wheat production. Increased green financing to boost irrigation and support yield productivity was also touted as one of the solutions to the current issue bedevilling the continent’s agricultural system.
India kicked back at efforts to expand the reduction of emissions of greenhouse gases to the agriculture sector. The country representative highlighted that the world is facing a climate crisis today because of the excessive historical emissions by the developed nations. In defence of developing nations, India noted that agriculture in such countries is done by small and marginal farmers who till hard, toil hard and brave the vagaries of extreme weather and climate variability. Hence, emissions from developing nations are survival emissions and not luxury emissions.
Iran and Venezuela’s Bromance Extends to Agriculture and the Mining Industry.
Iran and Venezuela have continued their bromance by signing a cooperation document in the agricultural field. The cooperation is for plant protection and quarantine, which is regarded as a prelude to the next agreements in the fields of technical, mechanisation, and cultivation, as well as exchanging know-how in the related areas. Iran’s bromance with Venezuela started in June when a 20-year cooperation agreement was signed while not publicising the details. This cooperation between the two countries whose economies have been crippled by sanctions from the US gives off a symbolism that Iran’s President has continued a push that has seen him craft his foreign policy around anti-US motifs after missing out on boosting relations with traditional Asian allies and lacks a roadmap for renewing ties with the West.
Venezuela agreed to provide 1m hectares of agricultural land for Iran’s overseas cultivation projects in June, helping grow crops like soybeans and corn. Venezuela can also provide Iran with 500k hectares to conduct extraterritorial cultivation, and the lands can be planted twice yearly. Iran is self-sufficient in the cement industry as the equipment and technology of building cement units in Iran are completely Iran-made and has also agreed to partner with Venezuela in the mining industry by supplying the country with technologies required in its mining sector.
Ecologists Insist Mankind Must Adapt or Starve – COP27.
COP27 turned its attention to adapting the current agricultural processes, pointing out that the current farming methods are not sustainable and are one of the highest contributors to climate change, contributing to about one-third of global greenhouse emissions from production to consumption. Parts of Ethiopia, Kenya, and Somalia have experienced four consecutive failed rainy seasons. Families and farmers are suffering across the Horn of Africa as it experiences its most severe drought in recent history. Calls have been made to end food waste as over 800m people go hungry daily, and a third of food produced is wasted. Scientists have also pointed out that a large amount of methane comes from “biogenic sources”, such as wetlands and rice paddies. The current agricultural model degrades the soil, causing more fertilisers, weakening the soil and seeping into water bodies, thereby affecting aquatic animals and humans.
Malaysia Warns of Uncertainty in Global Palm Oil Market in 2023.
Malaysia’s palm oil board warned that 2023 would be challenging for the oil market, which has battled volatility triggered by recession fears, the war in Ukraine, shifts in weather patterns, and the labour situation. In the near term, disruptions to palm oil supplies because of tropical storms in top producers are expected to continue into Q1 2023, further backing the upward drive of oil prices. With Indonesia’s plan to replant their oil palm trees for three years, which caused the export of old stock of oil palm, oil prices dropped this year as a near-term effect. The monsoon season is picking up in Malaysia and has triggered flooding across the country. This replanting plan and the problems these countries face would see oil palm prices rebound in 2023.
COP27 Pays Attention to Agriculture with Fertilizer Top on the Agenda.
The agricultural sector gained attention at COP27 as discussions were made on the global fertilizer challenge. A consortium of countries came together to solve the problem, resulting in a fundraising of US$135m for fertilizer efficiency. Janusz Wojciechowski, commissioner of agriculture, European Union, pointed out that the current challenge with fertilizer started when the Covid-19 pandemic affected supply chains, causing higher fertilizer prices in 2021. Next, the highest fertilizer exporter, Russia, invaded Ukraine, causing an increase in food prices as exports of grains like wheat and corn were disrupted.
Moving into the Q3, countries battled extreme weather conditions ranging from prolonged heat to flooding in different parts of the world, which destroyed many farmlands. This has posed a global threat as the world braces for a global decline in harvests compared to the initial forecasts earlier this year. The Global Fertilizer Challenge aims to reduce the use of mineral fertilizers and adopt new tools, including biological products, to enhance nutrient efficiency and green nitrogen sources. The first challenge the plan would need to solve is making fertilizer available and affordable, as this would go a long way in helping farmers.
The rally in naira at the parallel market waned on Tuesday, as the currency depreciated to N800/ US$1 from N690 per dollar recorded last week Friday. For the rest of the week, the naira staggered between N780 and N850 and settled at N785 on Friday.
At the Investor and Exporter FX fixing, naira appreciated by -0.10% week-on-week to settle at N445.67. However, Naira fell at the NAFEX fixing to N444.38 on Thursday, indicating a weekly loss of +0.06% (see table 2 below).
Table 2: Naira/Dollar at the I&E FX Window and NAFEX Market
|Average Benchmark Yields|
The funding rate remained elevated this week as the bond primary auction mopped out liquidity in the system. On Friday, Open Repo Rate (OPR) rate and Overnight rate (O/N) rose by +26.66% and +37.50% to 16.25% and 16.50% respectively (see table 3 below).
Table 3: Money Market
|Money Market Rate|
Funding rates should maintain current levels in the absence of any significant inflow in the coming week
Treasury Bills Market
Investors showed mild buying interest in the Nigerian Treasury bill this week, bringing the average benchmark yield lower by -0.27% to 10.99 compared to the previous week.
For OMO bills, the average benchmark yield increased by +6.50% to 10.82, week-on-week (See table 4 below).
Table 4: Treasury Bills Market
|Average Benchmark Yields|
|T. Bills (%)||11.02||10.99||-0.27%|
|OMO Bills (%)||10.16||10.82||+6.50%|
The MPC decision should dictate the direction of the market next week
FGN Bond Market
Mid-week, the bond market had some buying interest, retracting the quiet sentiment at the beginning of the week. The bond market closed bullish on Friday, reversing the bearish sentiment in the past weeks, the average benchmark yield declined by 68bps to 14.68%, week-on-week (See table 5 below).
Table 5: FGN Bonds Market
|Average Benchmark Yields|
The outcome of the MPC meeting on Monday should determine the direction of the market
November 2022 Bond Issuance Oversubscribed by 20%
Reversing the low subscription seen in the past months, yesterday’s primary auction had an oversubscription of 20% at N269bn worth of notes as against the N225bn offered. The oversubscription was majorly at the 2037 tenor, while the 2029 and 2032 had a low subscription of N39.45bn and 34.82bn, respectively. The rates on 2029, 2032, and 2037 maturities rose by 25bps, 20bps, and 20bps to settle at 14.75%, 15.20%, and 16.20%, respectively (see table 6 below).
Table 6: Nigerian Bond Auction Result Auction
|Nigerian Bond Auction|
|Tenor||Amount offered (N’bn)||Total subscription (N’bn)||Amount sold
|Previous Stop Rate (%)|
Source: Debt Management Office (DMO)
DMO to raise N100bn through Al-ljarah Sukuk Bond Issuance
The Federal Government of Nigeria has launched a series V Sovereign Sukuk bond of N100bn to finance the rehabilitation and construction of road projects specified by federal government securities. The Sukuk Al-Ijarah bond has a tenor of 10 years, with the repayment scheduled to be paid on bullet sum at maturity. The offer will begin on November 21 to close on November 29, 2022, and investors can invest with a minimum of N10,000 (at N1,000/unit). The rental rate for the offer will be disclosed when the offer begins. Previous issuances have recorded oversubscription, but the rental rate for the issuance should determine the direction of the subscription for this issuance, as investors have to consider the real return with the high inflation expectations.
Foreign Holdings of US Treasuries Drop in September
According to the data from the US Treasury department, foreign holdings of Treasuries in September dropped to their lowest level since May 2021, led by Japan and China. Their currencies have struggled against the strong dollar this year. Japan’s Stash of treasuries dropped to $1.120trn from $1.199trn in August, with the majority spent on currency intervention as $19.7bn was spent by BOJ in September for intervention. As for China, the treasuries fell to $933.6bn in September from $971.8bn in August. China’s Treasuries have been under $1trn for six consecutive months. Generally, investors sold treasuries in September with the expectation that Fed would push the terminal fed funds rate to between 5%-5.25%. Despite the selloffs, foreigners piled into US treasury bonds and notes in September valued at $60.4bn. Analysts believe the foreign holdings of Treasuries will continue to decline as the recession risks have generated huge selloffs recently.
Naira Gains Ebb at Parallel Market as Demand for Dollar Rises
The rally in naira at the parallel market waned Tuesday, as the currency depreciated to N800/ US$1. According to Bureaux De Change operators, the recent loss was driven by the increased demand for dollars relative to the supply. The demand resurfaced as people doubted the authenticity of the circulating report about the non-acceptance of dollars below the 2021 printing date. The rally in the previous week was expected to be short-lived as the strong appreciation in the dollar in 2022 will continue to fuel the demand for the currency. On the official market side, the currency depreciated to N446.67/US$1 at the Investor and Exported FX fixings. Analysts expect the fall in naira to persist, moving close to the deadline date for the currency swap.
NGX – Listed Equities
- The Nigerian bourse ended the week on a positive note as market sentiment turned positive. The NGXASI closed the week with a gain of -1.19% as against a -0.68% loss recorded last week. The Nigerian Exchange recorded N291.93bn gain in naira terms.
- Year-to-date, the NGXASI maintained its positive position to close the week with a gain of +4.16% as market capitalization settled at N24.233trn.
- Sectoral performance across sectors was broadly positive WoW. At the close of trading on Friday, thirteen (13) sectors closed positive WoW while two (2) sectors closed negative WoW and two (2) sectors closed flat WoW. NGX AFRBVI topped the gainer’s chart with a gain of +5.89% WoWwhile the NGX OIL and GAS Index topped the loser’s chart with a loss of -1.34% WoW (see chart 1 below).
Chart 1: Movement of NGXASI Index Points 1ST NOV. 2022 – 18TH NOV. 2022
NASD OTC Exchange – Unlisted Equities
The NASD OTC Security Index (NSI) and Market Capitalization closed the trading week on a negative note. The NSI and Market capitalization closed the week at 711.61 points and 935.07 with a decrease of -0.45% respectively (see table 7 below).
Table 7 : NASD W-o-W Change
|MKT Capitalization (Bn)||939.25||935.07||-0.45%|
|Value Traded (000)||311,522.00||15,500.00||-95.02%|
Dangote Index closed the week negative at 124.85 index points from 125.00 index points recorded the previous week, representing a decrease of -0.12% W-o-W. DANGSUGER closed the week negative with -2.76% W-o-W while DANGCEM and NASCON remained flat respectively WoW (see table 8 below).
Table 8: Dangote Index W-o-W Change
Furthermore, the Elumelu Index closed negative at 107.51 index points from 107.74 index points recorded the previous week, representing a decrease of -0.21% W-o-W. TRANSCORP closed the week positive with +2.78%, while AFRIPRUD, UBA and UBCAP closed the week negative with -0.93%, -0.69% and -0.41% respectively while TRANSCOHOT closed the week flat W-o-W (see table 9 below).
Table 9: Elumelu Index W-o-W Change