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Double Threats Emerge against Naira, Dollar Value in Official, Unofficial Markets Takes Big Turn

by Vicky Oselumese
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Double Threats Emerge against Naira, Dollar Value in Official, Unofficial Markets Takes Big Turn

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The Nigerian currency, the Naira, has experienced a depreciation in both the official and unofficial foreign exchange markets in recent days.

This depreciation is said to be a result of the re-emergence of currency speculators utilizing two cryptocurrency platforms. The Nigerian government has recently taken action against Binance operations in Nigeria, dragging its executives to court.

In the official markets, the US dollar has strengthened against the Naira, causing concerns.

On Friday, April 19, 2024, the Naira depreciated by 1.4% or N15.91 against the US dollar in the Nigerian Autonomous Foreign Exchange Market (NAFEM), trading at N1,169.99/$1 compared to the previous day’s rate of N1,154.08/$1.

This marks the third consecutive trading day of losses for the Naira in the official markets.

Similarly, in the unofficial markets, the Naira weakened by N30 against the dollar, quoting at N1,150/$1, compared to the previous day’s exchange rate of N1,120/$1. The recent poor performance of the Naira has raised concerns, especially considering its previous strong performance in both official and unofficial markets, positioning it as one of the best-performing currencies worldwide.

The fall of the Naira has been attributed to the return of forex speculators, with the new crypto exchange platforms Bybit and Bitget being cited as the cause of the latest slip.

These platforms gained attention on Twitter, with many claiming that forex manipulators rushed to crypto platforms to drive up the value of the dollar for their own gains.

There are now calls on social media for the federal government to intervene and halt the operations of peer-to-peer crypto platforms to prevent further depreciation of the Naira.

Despite these concerns, Vice President Kashim Shettima remains optimistic that the Naira will regain its status as a strong currency.

He assured visitors from the Lagos State Chambers of Commerce (LCCI) that the leadership is capable of reversing the trend and that the Naira is gaining ground.

This article was updated 1 month ago

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