The Naira on both parallel and official markets, has on Thursday been rated the worst performing currency in Africa in 2016. According to Bloomberg data, the Nigerian naira, came ahead of only two currencies in the world – Venezulan bolivar and Suriname dollar.
The Naira, which began trading at around 283 to the dollar at the inter-bank market on Thursday, depreciated to 284/$1 to become the third worst performing currency in the world for 2016.
The top three performing currencies of 2016 are all universal currencies; Silver, Gold and Platinum, which have gained 45.93 percent, 25.11 percent and 22.79 percent respectively. These currencies are followed by the Brazilian real, the Russian rubble and the Japanese Yen.
The best performers in Africa are South African rand, Zambian kwacha, Somali shilling and Botswana Pula, which have gained 8.88 percent, 8.69 percent, 5.54 percent and 4.95 percent respectively.
At the base of the African currencies are the naira, Mozambique new metical, Sierra Leone leone, and the Angolan kwanza.
At the Nigerian parallel market, the Naira fell to its lowest level since the start of the new foreign exchange regime, trading at 363/$1 and 485 to the pound in Abuja and Port Harcourt. The Euro traded above N390 in Lagos and under 380 in the nation’s capital, Abuja.
The Naira has fallen consistently at the interbank market this week, a development that is reflected in the volatility it has recorded at the parallel market. The currency depreciated at the interbank market to 282.5, 283.25, 283.75 against the dollar between Monday and Thursday.
In 2016, the Naira has lost 29.61 percent of its value on the official market, following the decision of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to allow for a floating foreign exchange regime.
The local currency has been on the downward swing following a plunge in crude oil prices and a consequent decline in Nigeria’s foreign reserves.