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BUSINESS ROUNDUP: Ghana’s Cedi emerges best African currency; Nigeria’s external reserves lost $177.6m in March; Other stories

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Hello, and welcome to Business Roundup this week. Here, we bring you highlights of events that happened during the week -from the capital market to the mainstream business activities, while not forgetting the tech/economy build up.

Here are the Headlines:

  • Eight banks sack 3,754 staff in 2020 -Report
  • Ghana’s Cedi emerges best African currency for 1st quarter 2021
  • Nigerians owe N273.42bn electricity debt in 2020
  • Nigeria’s external reserves dropped by $177.6m in March – CBN

Summary:

Despite the Central Bank of Nigeria warning to banks on staff lay-off, eight lenders in the country sacked at least 3,754 workers last year, Ripples Nigeria reports.

The CBN had in May last year warned banks against the sack of employees as speculation of mass retrenchment in the sector made the round following the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country.

However, the total number of staff among the banks surveyed dropped by 7.31 per cent from 51,350 in 2019 to 47,596 in 2020.

The Ghanaian cedi has emerged as the best currency in Africa for the first quarter of 2021, according to data from Databank Research.

Ghana ended the first quarter on March 31st with a year to date appreciation of 0.06 per cent against the dollar.

While Nigeria’s Naira ended the quarter with 0.0 per cent, exchanging at N382.5 as of March 31 from 381.48 it opened the year.

Consumers in the country increased debt owed to Electricity Distribution Companies (DisCos) by 18.38 per cent in 2020, data from the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission financial report has shown.

The report obtained by Ripples Nigeria revealed that out of N816.15 billion electricity bill issued to consumers by the 11 Electricity Distribution Companies (DisCos) in 2020, only N542.73 billion was paid.

 

Nigeria’s external reserves dropped by $177.6 million last month, data from the Central Bank of Nigeria revealed on Thursday.

The country’s external reserves dropped from $34.99 billion on March 1 to $34.82 billion as of March 31.

This, according to the apex bank, represented a drop of 0.50 per cent. It was also a sharp decrease from the $36.19 billion recorded in February. R

On NSE ROUNDUP: Nigeria’s stock market bearish run continues.

The Nigerian stock market remained in the bearish zone for the second consecutive day after the equity capitalization dipped further at the close of trading on Wednesday.

The equity capitalization dropped from N20.54 trillion to N20.42 trillion on the day.

The All- Share Index dipped by 0.57 per cent to drop from 39, 267.11 to 39,045.13 at the close of business on Wednesday

On the tech scene, the week saw a number of new developments with the extension of the SIM-NIN registration process by the federal government coming on Friday.

Top on the feed is She Leads Africa opening an opportunity window for startups, managed by the female gender, to benefit from.

Also, tech players and enthusiasts celebrated Nigerian recruitment startup TalentQL’s feat of entering into Techstars Toronto accelerator programme.

 

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