Naira weakened against the U.S. dollar at the official market on Friday, after the currency appreciated in the last two consecutive business days at the spot market. The local unit which opened trading at N427.00 closed at N430.00 to a dollar on Friday, data posted on the FMDQ website where forex is officially traded showed.
This implies a N4.00 or 0.94 per cent devaluation from N426.00 it exchanged in the previous market session on Thursday. The naira reached an intraday high of N406.90 and anchored to a low of N444.00 before closing at N430.00 per $1 on Friday, the last business day of the week.
This is the weakest rate the currency traded at the Nafex window this week. However, the weakest rate the naira has exchanged this year was the N430.33 mark it closed on Friday last week. The currency has been trading within the range of N417 and N430.33 benchmarks at the official market within the last six months amidst forex scarcity.
Foreign exchange supply at the market on Friday plummeted by 79.83 per cent with $36.47 million recorded at the close of business against the $180.83 million posted in the previous session on Thursday. Similarly, the naira depreciated further at the parallel market on Friday inching towards the N700 to a dollar rate.
Street market dealers in Uyo, exchanged the naira at N658.00 and sold at N660.00 to a dollar on Friday.
“The market is bad today,” a currency dealer, Shuaibu, told Easterner in an interview.
He said they were finding it difficult to withdraw dollars from their banks, reason the naira-to-dollar exchange margin is widening.
“The banks are hoarding the dollar from us,” he added.
At the Abuja black market, currency dealers said they exchanged the dollar with the greenback currency at N655.00 to a dollar and sold at N658.00 on Friday.
“The price started going up since last year when CBN placed a ban on giving dollars to marketers,” a dealer at Wuse Zone 4 market who refused to have his name in print told Easterner in an interview on Friday.
He also said the scarcity of dollars was because bankers were hoarding the notes.
“Even today, some EFCC officials came to harass us that we are the people causing inflation,” he said.