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Dangote Cement Empowers 30 Youths from Host Communities

Dangote Cement Empowers 30 Youths from Host Communities
Plant Director, Dangote Cement, Ibese, Mr. Azad Nawabuddin (2nd right) presenting starter packs to one of the beneficiaries while the GM, HAM/Admin, Alh. Abu Sufyan(right) and Deputy Area Manager, ITF, Ogun State, Mrs. Funmi Coker (left) watch.

Dangote Cement Empowers 30 Youths from Host Communities

No fewer than 30 youths from communities around Ibese in Ogun State have graduated from a training programme put together by Dangote Cement Plc, Ibese Plant as a way of transforming society and providing employment opportunities for the youths.

The empowerment programme which afforded the youths the opportunity to be trained on domestic electrical installation, wiring and maintenance is aimed at accelerating social and economic development of host communities and in line with the United Nation Sustainable Development Goal.

In the same vein, the Cement plant commissioned a solar-powered Borehole in Abule Oke in Yewa North Local Government, Ogun State in fulfilment of its promises made to the communities during its Community Day celebration last December.

The youths were also presented with start-up tools for immediate commencement of their vocation after the training which was put in place by the Ibese Plant in partnership with Industrial Training Fund (ITF).

Addressing the beneficiaries at the closing ceremony of the programme, the Dangote Cement, Ibese Plant Director, Mr. Azad Nawabuddin, described the empowerment initiative as a demonstration of the Company’s commitment to the continued socio-economic development of the host communities in line with the Community Development Agreement signed in 2022.

According to him, the Company’s social development strategy “does not support giving people fish to eat but focuses on teaching people how to fish saying the Company was being proactive by engaging the communities members, especially the youths with so much energy and vigour.  “Rather we empower them to be self-sufficient and self-reliant”.

Mr. Azad reeled out past empowerment initiatives of the Plant aimed at reducing unemployment gaps in the local communities and ultimately improving the standard of living, which include training in catering and event management, tailoring and fashion design and Acutherapy, from which 275 indigent youths have so far benefitted.

He commended the beneficiaries for their determination and zeal to learn new skills to better their lives and urged them to apply the technical and entrepreneurial knowledge garnered during the training in building sustainable businesses while committing to continued development of their skills and expertise in line with the global trends.

The Deputy Area Manager, Industrial Training Fund Abeokuta Area Office, Mrs. Funmi Coker, commended Dangote Cement Plc Ibese Plant for devoting resources to develop the capacity of the Youths in relevant trade areas to make them useful for themselves and their immediate communities. She further appreciated the Company’s consistent collaboration to achieve the Nation’s training objectives, while charging other corporate bodies to follow suit.

Mr.Dayo Ogunyinka, the Vice Chairman of the Community Joint Consultative Committee also expressed delight for the Company’s annual empowerment initiative. He enjoined the beneficiaries to see the gesture as a life-changing opportunity with the capability to take them to the pinnacle of success and ensure that the starter packs received are used for the intended purpose.

One of the beneficiaries, Ms. Elegbede Ganiyat, from Iboro host community appreciated Dangote Cement for considering it worthy to invest in the development of the youths and described her experience during the training as enriching and everlasting. She assured that the beneficiaries have been well prepared to calve a niche for themselves in the electrical services market in their locality and beyond.

Meanwhile, the Cement Company has handed over a multi-million naira solar-powered borehole to the people of Abule-Oke, a host community at a ceremony witnessed by the Olu of Imasayi, Oba Lukman Kuoye; the Baale of Abule Oke, Chief Ramoni Akinsanya other community leaders, youths, women and other indigenes.

Speaking during the hand-over, the Plant Director, Mr. Azad Nawabuddin emphasized the essentiality of water to the survival of humans and advised the community to make good use of the borehole facility and put up a framework to ensure its security, maintenance and sustenance as their equity contribution to the project.

The Olu of Imasayi commended the Management of Dangote Cement for “being the transformer illuminating the entire Yewaland”, while acknowledging the commitment of the Company to improving the standard of living of people in its host communities. He charged the people of Abule Oke to ensure that the borehole facility is sustained such that coming generations can benefit from the project, as only the judicious use of the facility can encourage the Company to invest more in infrastructural developments in the community.

The people of Abule Oke were full of gratitude to the Company for the provision of the water facility, as expressed by the youth leader, Mr. Rafiu Akinola who declared that the intervention was timely and value-adding, especially considering the fact that it is powered by Solar thus saving the community of the cost of fueling and maintenance of generator.

CBN Devalues Naira 12.95% despite Rising Foreign Reserves

Nigeria’s Bond Yield Rises as DMO Plans N360bn Auction

Nigeria's Bond Yield Rises as DMO Plans N360bn Auction
Patience Oniha, DMO Chief

Nigeria’s Bond Yield Rises as DMO Plans N360bn Auction

The average yield on Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) bonds yields climbed in the secondary market over bearish trading activities ahead of Debt Management Office (DMO) plans to auction N360 billion papers.

At the auction, the DMO will be offering instruments worth N360.00 billion through re-openings of the 13.98% FGN FEB 2028, 12.50% FGN APR 2032, 16.25% FGN APR 2037 and 14.80% FGN APR 2049 bonds.

Reflecting investors’ mood given changing market dynamics, analysts are projecting that spot rates on the issuance will increase at the auction, a projection anchored on a sustained inflation rate surge and pressures on liquidity in the financial system.

Fixed interest income analysts and traders said they expect the outcome of the March 2023 FGN bond auction to influence the sentiments in the secondary market – which has maintained bullish momentum over the year.

Last week, the local bond market was dominated by bearish sentiment as traders sold off in anticipation of higher stop rates at the primary market auction, traders said in a market brief.

Thus, the market price of FGN bonds traded at the secondary market moderated, pushing yields up as investors begin to demand for higher returns following inflation pressures in the economy.

Nigeria’s headline inflation rate worsened to 21.91% in February, according to statistics office data, pushed by failed naira redesign policy and rising food prices. This has widened real return on investment further but analysts are projecting yield repricing as government implement borrowing plans for 2023.

The 10-year 16.29% FGN MAR 2027 and the 20-year 16.25% FGN APR 2037 notes fell by N0.35 and N0.29, respectively; analysts at Cowry Asset Management Limited told clients via email.

Due to the selloffs in the segment, the debt instruments see their corresponding yields inch upward to 12.45% (from 12.36%) and 15.40% (from 15.00%), respectively.

However, traders revealed that the yield on the 15-year 12.50% FGN MAR 2035 and the 30-year 12.98% FGN MAR 2050 stayed unchanged at 14.68% and 15.00%, respectively.

Given the trading pattern, the average yield expanded by 20 basis points to 13.3%.

Across the benchmark curve, Cordros Capital Limited analysts said the average yield inched higher at the short (+58bps) and long (+6bps) ends. Investors took profit on the MAR-2024 (+191bps) and APR-2049 (+28bps) bonds, respectively.

Meanwhile, the average yield was flat at the mid-segment, analysts maintain a medium-term view that the FG’s frontloading of significant borrowings for the year will result in an uptick in bond yields, as investors demand higher yields in the face of elevated supply. #Nigeria’s Bond Yield Rises as DMO Plans N360bn Auction

CBN Devalues Naira 12.95% despite Rising Foreign Reserves

Oil Declines 3% over Demand Concerns

Oil Declines 3% over Demand Concerns

Oil Declines 3% over Demand Concerns

Crude oil prices declined amidst demand concerns following news that UBS will buy struggling Credit Suisse fails to assuage worries over the ongoing banking crisis in the United States. 

Brent crude futures were down more than 3% to $70 a barrel on Monday, holding at levels not seen since late 2021, and extending a 12% slump last week, as concerns mount that the banking turmoil could hurt the economies and cause a recession, lowering fuel demand.

West Texas Instrument (WTI) crude futures were down almost 3% to $65 a barrel on Monday, holding at levels not seen since late 2021, and extending a 13% slump last week, as concerns mount that the banking turmoil could hurt the economies and cause a recession, lowering fuel demand.

Yet, initial enthusiasm over the government-backed takeover of Credit Suisse by UBS and coordinated action by major central banks to boost dollar liquidity faded, leading to a more cautious mood.

On the other hand, signs of strong demand from top crude importer China emerged, with Unipec buying 2 million barrels of the North Sea’s Johan Sverdrup crude, the first purchase to Asia in three months, according to Bloomberg.

Traders were also cautious ahead of Fed’s monetary policy decision this week while watching closely for any potential response to the rout from OPEC+, though the group is expected to stay put for now.

Fed officials are also set to meet this week amid uncertainty about the path of interest rates. “Volatility is likely to linger this week, with broader financial market concerns likely to remain at the forefront,” says ING in a note.

A ministerial committee of OPEC and producer allies including Russia, known as OPEC+, is set to meet on April 3, with a full ministerial meeting planned for June 4. The organization had agreed in October to cut oil production targets by 2 million barrels per day until the end of 2023.

Separately, Goldman Sachs cut its forecasts for Brent crude after prices plunged on banking and recession fears. The investment bank is now expecting Brent to average $94 a barrel in the next 12 months, and $97 in the second half of 2024, down from $100 previously. #Oil Declines 3% over Demand Concerns

CBN Devalues Naira 12.95% despite Rising Foreign Reserves

T-Bills Yield Crosses 5% after PMA Spot Price Action

T-Bills Yield Crosses 5% after PMA Spot Price Action

T-Bills Yield Crosses 5% after PMA Spot Price Action

The average on Nigerian Treasury bills crossed 5% in the secondary market after the Central Bank (CBN) oversubscribed primary market auction (PMA) last week, according to traders’ notes.

The apex bank refinanced N161.87 billion of T-bills that matured via the primary market at lower rates for most maturities as investors continued to demand short-term government debt.

At the Nigerian Treasury bills auction, the spot price on short tenored bills increased in what appeared to be a reversal of its previous price action. On the other hand, mid and long-dated Nigerian Treasury bills were priced down in contrast to previous hikes as liquidity conditions in the market tightened.

Speaking of funding profile, in the money market, short-term benchmark rates adjusted upward as liquidity level in the financial system faced pressures. The overnight lending rate expanded by 299 basis points week on week to 13.8%, as the debits for banking sector cash reserve ratio alignments offset N128.40 billion inflow from FGN bond coupon payments. 

“We highlight that the average system liquidity this week settled at a net long position of N331.98 billion as against a net long position of N294.52 billion in the previous week. We note that last week’s average system liquidity does not reflect today’s CRR debits”, Cordros Capital said in a market brief.

Market participants reacted with selling rallies following the CBN auctions last week. In the secondary market, the Treasury bills secondary traded with bearish sentiments, as the average yield across all instruments expanded by 163 basis points to 5.2%.

Across the segments, analysts at Cordros Capital Limited told clients via email that the average yield increased by 173 basis points to 5.4% in the NTB secondary market but remained at 3.0% in the OMO bills segment.

At the CBN auction, the apex bank offered N161.87 billion or subscriptions as it seek to refinance maturing bills. This was split into N1.10 billion for 91 days, N918.38 million for 182 days, and N159.85 billion for 364-day –bills.

Analysts said demand at the auction was higher than the previous sales, as the total subscription level settled at N1.03 trillion, translating to a bid-to-offer settled at 6.4x with more interest on the longer-dated bills.

At the previous auction sales, total subscriptions for government bills came at N0.91 trillion. Auction results indicated that market participants/Investors seek to lock in N1.01 trillion to purchase 182-day and 364-day treasury bills at the CBN auction, translating to 97.6% of the total subscription.

The large bet allowed the apex bank to price down spot rates on the mid and long-dated bills. As CBN allotted the exact sum offered at the auction, stop rates for 182-day and 364-day bills moderated to 5.00% (from 6.00%) and 9.49% (from 10.00%), respectively.

However, the yield on 91-day bills rose to 2.66% (from 1.40%).  “Given the expected tight liquidity in the system next week, we anticipate an increase in T-bills yields from current levels”, Cordros Capital stated.

Analysts said they believe the overnight rate will head northwards, as the outflows for FGN Bonds, and FX auctions will put further downward pressure on the financial system liquidity and offset the impact of the anticipated inflow from FGN bond coupon payments. # T-Bills Yield Crosses 5% after PMA Spot Price Action

Nigerian Banks Give Fresh Update on Naira Swap

Bitcoin Crosses $28,000 over Fresh Cryptos Rally

Bitcoin Crosses $28,000 over Fresh Cryptos Rally

Bitcoin Crosses $28,000 over Fresh Cryptos Rally

Bitcoin surged past $28,000, adding $1,400 to its previous close. Bitcoin, the world’s biggest and best-known cryptocurrency, is up 72% from the year’s low of $16,496 on Jan. 1.

Ether, the coin linked to the Ethereum blockchain network, rose 3.58% to $1,827.2 on Sunday, adding $63.1 to its previous close. At the time of writing, the leading cryptocurrency is trading at $28,063, a 2.4% increase in the past 24 hours.

The price reached $28,459 at its highest point during the day, before trading at $26,877 during the day’s low. Overall this week, Bitcoin has gained over 37% against the U.S. dollar.

Bitcoin’s market capitalization added $194 billion in 2023, representing a 66% gain year-to-date, outperforming Wall Street banks stocks especially as fears of a global banking crisis are rising.

United States bank valuations have slid amid the ongoing fear surrounding regional banks in the country following last week’s developments, including the shutdown of Silvergate, followed by regulators’ subsequent takeover of Signature Bank and Silicon Valley Bank.

Bitcoin’s (BTC) price surged on March 19 to surpass the $28,000 zone, marking a 16% boost in value in the past 7 days, according to Cointelegraph’s MarketPro data.

Credit Suisse was acquired by UBS for nearly $2 billion earlier in the day as part of emergency plans led by Swiss authorities to preserve the country’s financial stability.

The $2 billion deal represents a considerable discount under Credit Suisse’s market value on March 17 of nearly $8 billion, according to data from Companies Market Cap. #Bitcoin Crosses $28,000 over Fresh Cryptos Rally

Moody’s Downgrades Nigeria over High Debt, Low Revenue

Nigeria’s External Reserves Drop amidst Scarce FX Inflow

Nigeria's External Reserves Drop amidst Scarce FX Inflow

Nigeria’s External Reserves Drop amidst Scarce FX Inflow

Nigeria’s external reserves decline to $36 billion as the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) reported an outflow of more than $300 million in a week amidst scarcity of foreign currencies inflows.

The outflow occurs as the apex bank maintains its foreign exchange market intervention to keep the local currency, the naira, strong against primary currencies like the US dollar, the British pound sterling, and Euro among others.

Nigeria is yet to meet its 1.8 million barrels per day quota as a member of the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies (OPEC+), losing earnings FX revenues.

OPEC recently confirmed that oil production surged to 1.3 million barrels per day as government fight oil theft across waterways with private security firms. In the oil market, the up-and-down movement of the oil price continued to drive volatility across markets as it rebounded a little to trade at $74.69 per barrel.

Crude oil price adjustment followed the fear of recession in the midst of US bank failures, soaring inflation across the globe, and tightened supply due to the Russia-Ukraine war that entered its first year last week.

However, on the home front, analysts said Bonny Light crude price reacted to factors playing in the oil market, plunged by 6.9% or US$5.72, week on week, to close at US$77.68 per barrel on Thursday, down from US$83.40 per barrel last week.

Last week, data from the CBN website showed that Nigeria’s FX reserves decreased by US$311.24 million to US$36.08 billion.

Based on its stance to defend the Nigerian naira, the apex bank has continued to conduct FX auctions, selling Forex to deposit money banks as a way to influence the exchange rate in the market. This week, the CBN is expected to conduct yet another FX auction despite declining external reserves.

Analysts said they believe FX liquidity issues will remain over the short-to-medium term as they do not see any positive signal that denotes an improvement in FX supply relative to the pre-pandemic levels. Nigerian Banks Give Fresh Update on Naira Swap

Moreover, considering the tepid accretion to the reserves given low crude oil production and elevated PMS under-recovery costs, foreign portfolio investors (FPIs) who have historically supported supply levels in the Investors’ window will be needed to sustain FX liquidity levels in the medium to long-term, Cordros Capital said. #Nigeria’s External Reserves Drop amidst Scarce FX Inflow

Data on Nigeria’s foreign reserves movement

NGX Sheds N479bn as Investors Take Profits

NGX Sheds N479bn as Investors Take Profits

NGX Sheds N479bn as Investors Take Profits

The equities segment of the Nigerian Exchange (NGX) recorded about N479 billion loss as investors traded exits amidst the US bank crisis that sent jittery across the markets.

Last week, the stock market benchmark index declined 1.5% to 54,915.39 points. Consequently, year-to-date return fell to 7.2% as the total market cap slumped to ₦29.9 trillion.

On account of weak sentiment, trading activity level dampened as average volume and value traded dipped 16.6% and 41.4% week on week to 170.7 million units and ₦2.4 billion respectively.

The top traded stocks by volume were TRANSCORP (74.2m units), STERLNBANK (68.3m units), and ZENITH (64.6m units) while ZENITH (₦1.6bn), NGXGROUP (₦1.4bn), and GTCO (₦1.3bn) led trade by value.

Following this large profit-taking seen at the Lagos bourse, Afrinvest Limited said performance across its analysts’ coverage sectors was underwhelming as 4 indices lost, 1 gained while the Oil & Gas index closed flat.

The Banking and Insurance indices led the laggards, down 4.6% and 2.4% Week on week respectively on account of selloffs in ZENITH (-4.7%), ETI (-10.0%), AIICO (-6.6%), and MANSARD (-4.8%).

Following, the AFR-ICT and Industrial Goods indices dipped 2.3% and 0.3% respectively, driven by price decline in MTNN (-5.0%), WAPCO (-4.9%), and CUTIX (-1.4%) in the week.

Conversely, the Consumer Goods index was the sole gainer, appreciating 1.4% week on week following price uptick on BUAFOODS (+4.2%), UNILEVER (+3.7%) and CHAMPION (+2.2%). 

Investor sentiment, as measured by market breadth, weakened to -0.3x from -0.2x recorded in the previous week as 19 stocks gained, 46 lost, while 87 were unchanged.

The top-performing stocks for the week were PRESTIGE (+9.8%), ENAMELWA (+9.6%), and UPL (+9.3%) while UCAP (-16.7%), LINKASSURE (-10.9%), and ETI (-10.0%) were the top underperforming stocks.

In the new week, Afrinvest stockbrokers said they expect buying interest to drive a positive performance as investors cherry-pick attractive tickers. Reactions continue to trail bank crisis in the US, signalling a possible slowdown in interest rate hikes by the Federal Reserve

#NGX Sheds N479bn as Investors Take Profits

Ecobank Lost 10% ahead of Dividend Notice

Ecobank Lost 10% ahead of Dividend Notice

Ecobank Lost 10% ahead of Dividend Notice

Pan African lender, Ecobank Transnational Incorporated, ETI, lost 10% of its market valuation to strong exits trade in the Nigerian Exchange, NGX, and US bank crisis sent jittery across the market.

Ticker: ETI share price dropped to N10.8 with 18.349 billion shares outstanding value at N198.175 billion as of Friday. The bank’s stock opened the week at N12, with a more than N200 billion market valuation amidst a plan to announce dividend payments for 2022.

The group reported an improved earnings performance in the third quarter of 2022 following balance sheet repair efforts. Ecobank offloaded its legacy burden, setting the Pan Africa lender on the path to growing earnings across the market.

Last week, management told the Nigerian Exchange Limited of the delay in the publication of ETI’s Consolidated Audited Accounts for the year ended December 31, 2022.

It said on March 1, 2023, its board of directors had approved the Audited Accounts and the payment of a dividend subject to the completion of standard procedures and relevant regulatory approvals.

The group revealed that it is yet to receive regulatory approval in respect of the component audit of a material subsidiary company. 

Accordingly, ETI said it has obtained the approval of the Securities and Exchange Commission of Nigeria for an extension of time till March 31, 2023, to file the 2022 Audited Accounts. 

The bank said the details of the audited accounts will be published upon approval of the regulators of the relevant material subsidiary. Overall, the Nigerian banking index slumped by 4.9% at the same time# Ecobank Lost 10% ahead of Dividend Notice

Nigeria’s Debts Rise ₦19tn in 5 Years as FCY Loan Gulps ₦109bn

MTNN Slumps 5% amidst Plan to Merge MoMo PSB, Yhello Digital

MTNN Slumps 5% amidst Plan to Merge MoMo PSB, Yhello Digital
Karl Toriola, MTN Nigeria Chief

MTNN Slumps 5% amidst Plan to Merge MoMo PSB, Yhello Digital

Investors in the equities segment of the Nigerian Exchange (NGX) re-priced MTN Nigeria Plc share downward last week as the United States (US) bank crisis spillover into the global markets.

The telecom giant lost 5% of its market valuation over weak sentiment in the local bourse. The decline outpaced around 2% shed by the equity market following profit taking in Ticker: MTNN.

Market data from the local bourse showed that from N248.30 in the week, MTN Nigeria’s share price fell to N236 with 20.354 billion shares outstanding valued at N4.8 trillion on Friday.

In a document submitted to the regulator, MTN Nigeria said it will seek shareholders’ consent to merge its two subsidiaries MoMo Payment Service Bank Limited and Yello Digital Financial Services.

It is also proposing to give shareholders the right to receive new ordinary shares instead of cash dividends to be declared by the Company from time to time commencing from the 2023 financial year. #MTNN Slumps 5% amidst Plan to Merge MoMo PSB, Yhello Digital

CBN Devalues Naira 12.95% despite Rising Foreign Reserves

Monetary Policy: Afrinvest Anticipates 50bps Interest Rate Hike

Monetary Policy: Afrinvest Anticipates 50bps Interest Rate Hike

Monetary Policy: Afrinvest Anticipates 50bps Interest Rate Hike

Ahead of the monetary policy committee (MPC) of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) meeting this week; investment banking firm, Afrinvest Limited has projected a 50 basis points increase in the policy rate to 18%, citing the rising inflation rate.

The Central Bank of Nigeria announced that 290th Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting will hold from March 20 and 21 to deliberate on macroeconomic conditions and how it will use policy rates to influence market directions.

At the CBN policy meeting in January, the committee raised the policy rate for the fifth consecutive time in the last 9-months by 100 basis points to 17.5% as fight against the hydra-headed inflation rate worsened.

“Sadly, Nigeria’s inflation rate has remained unresponsive to the CBN’s strategy – up 57 basis points since the last MPC to 21.91% year on year-, largely due to the fault lines in policy transmission mechanisms, lack of synergy between fiscal & monetary authorities, and negative spillovers from the external environment”, Afrinvest said in a brief.

For the upcoming meeting, analysts at the investment banking firm said they anticipate that the MPC might further tighten the anchor rate by 50 basis points to 18.0%. This move will be driven by the renewed hawkish posture of global systemic central banks, stubborn domestic inflation, and the positive but modest domestic GDP growth outlook.

In 2023, CBN expects gross domestic product (GDP) to grow by 2.88%, a more conservative target when compared with FG’s 3.75% growth target while IMF projected 3.21%. With the macroeconomic condition and policy direction, Afrinvest estimated that Nigeria’s economy will grow by 2.96% in 2023.

Explaining its projection, Afrinvest said it canvass that the MPC should shelve its unorthodox strategy which has made its policy tools mere signalling if inflation anchoring would be achieved.

“For instance, leading advanced economies such as the US, UK, and the EU have continued to tighten their financial conditions despite recent easing in inflation rates.

“Although the anchor rate is at record-high in Nigeria, the financing condition – especially the money market rates – have remained accommodative, making it counterproductive to disinflation expectations.

“Also, we believe that the high inflation rate debacle would linger so long as the CBN continues to prioritize fiscal expansion goals, especially through large-scale intervention facilities and overbearing deficit financing, ahead of its institutional primary objective of price stability”, analysts stated.

More so, Afrinvest advised that the MPC should review its currency management strategy as the biting effect of the ongoing ill-implemented currency redesign policy would lead to a self-induced stagflation experience (high inflation and slow growth) over the medium term.

In the United States, Fed’s hawkish push has created crisis for US Banks and analysts are projecting a slowdown as Jerome Powell, chairman of Federal Reserves will convene FOMC meeting this week. In the UK, market is also feeling the impacts of interest rate hikes and experts have started advising the Bank of England to loosen up.

#Monetary Policy: Afrinvest Anticipates 50bps Interest Rate Hike

Naira Steadies as Banks Issue Update on FX Purchase