Nigeria sells treasury bills worth N286.8 billion to support currency

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Godwin Emefiele, CBN Governor

Nigeria’s central bank on Friday held two auctions to sell treasury bills worth N286.8 billion ($939.56 million), traders said, as the regulator moved to tighten liquidity and curb speculation on the local currency.

Traders said the debt sale reduced the level of naira liquidity in the money market and pushed up the overnight interbank lending rate to 15 percent, up from 6.7 percent where it closed the previous day.

Nigeria is battling a currency crisis brought on by low oil prices which tipped its economy into recession and created chronic dollar shortages.

The central bank has been intervening on the official market in the last few months to try to narrow the spread between rates on the official market and black market – where the local currency trades around 30 percent weaker. It has sold about $5 billion since February.

The bank drained N200…

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