Naira Gets New Position as Another Currency Emerges as Best-Performing in Africa

Naira Gets New Position as Another Currency Emerges as Best-Performing in Africa

  • The Kenyan shilling has become Africa’s best-performing currency in Africa after a recent gain
  • The currency strengthened to a 15-month high against the US dollar amid improved FX inflows into the country
  • The naira suffered depreciation against the US dollar in the last three weeks, trading at N1,483.67 against the US dollar

The Kenyan shilling currency has risen to a 15-month high against the US dollar.

The last time the shilling performed this strong was in March last year, rising from Shs161 per dollar to Shs 128.66 to remain one of the best-performing currencies in Africa.

Kenyan shilling beats naira
The Kenyan shilling is now Africa's best-forming currency as the naira falls Credit: Joseph Egabor
Source: Getty Images

Agriculture imports improve dollar supply

Reports show that the performance is due to improved agricultural export inflows as dollar demand thaws among importers.

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The country’s central bank announced a new rate on Friday, June 14, 2024. It used accurate traded rates in the interbank market to calculate the official rate, boosting its conformity with market realities.

The governor of the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK), Kamau Thugge, disclosed the currency’s gain against the dollar and said it is partly due to monetary policy, which helped to improve investment inflows.

BusinessInsider reports that a surge in transfers has also bolstered the shilling. Remittances increased by 20% to N1.6 billion in the first four months of 2024 from the $1.34 billion recorded in the same period in 2023.

In April this year, the World Bank ranked the Kenyan shilling as Africa’s best-performing currency, ousting the Nigerian currency, the naira, which briefly occupied the position in the same month.

Naira suffers setback against the dollar in all markets

The shilling’s ranking followed a 12-year gain reported in February this year when it experienced a resurgence due to improved investor confidence, reflected in large inflows of $2 billion from Eurobond.

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Naira depreciates against dollar in official, black markets amid Eid-el-Kabir celebrations

The Nigerian currency, the naira, has been relegated to a far-off position following its woeful performance in the last two months.

The naira has traded above N1,400 per dollar in the last three weeks as Nigeria battles forex scarcity.

The Central Bank of Nigeria halted the weekly forex sales to Bureau de Change operators in the country, which analysts blamed on the lack of FX.

On Friday, June 13, 2024, the naira depreciated to N1,482 per dollar from the N1,473 it traded the day before.

Currency traders quoted the dollar at an intra-day high of N1,490 per dollar and a low of N1,390.

Data from the FMDQ Exchange shows that forex turnover at NAFEM improved to $183.47 million from the $163 million recorded the previous day.

Currency dealers, traders, and others quote new FX rates reported that after four days of holding firm, the Nigerian currency, the naira, finally fell marginally in the official and parallel markets.

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Currency dealers, traders, others quote new exchange rates as naira crashes slightly in all markets

The naira traded slightly lower in the official foreign exchange market on Thursday, June 13, 2024, at N1,476.24 per dollar, compared to the N1,473.66 it traded on Tuesday, June 11, 2024.

According to data from the FMDQ Exchange, traders quoted the naira at a high of N1,500 per dollar and a low of N1,400.


Pascal Oparada avatar

Pascal Oparada (Business editor) Pascal Oparada is a Mass Communications Graduate from Yaba College of Technology with over 10 years of experience in journalism. He has worked in reputable media organizations such as Daily Independent, TheNiche newspaper, and the Nigerian Xpress. He is a 2018 PwC Media Excellence Award winner.