Economy, Finance, Business News Headlines & Insights: 28th April 2020

Economy, Finance, Business News Headlines & Insights: 28th April 2020
A ‘fresh breath of dollars is coming’ and it’s coming earlier than we expected…

“We are working very rapidly to provide a significant emergency financing to Nigeria,” Georgieva said on a webcast held by the Atlantic Council. “I expect this to be done by the end of the month.”

International Monetary Fund Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva said on Monday that she expected the Fund to have provided Nigeria with significant emergency financing by the end of April, signaling likely IMF board approval for the oil exporter’s $3.4 billion request. The IMF’s board on Tuesday is scheduled to consider a Nigeria’s request for the emergency financing to combat the impact of the coronavirus. Source: Reuters

Stock Market Update and Corporate Disclosures:

The All-Share-Index is currently up by 0.14% with Banks dominating the gainers’ list. GTB is currently up by 2.5%, Sterling Bank is up by 1.65%, Zenith and UBA are up by 0.70% and 0.85% respectively.

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WAPIC Insurance Plc – Appointment of New Chairman of Board
Sunmonu succeeds Aig-Imoukhuede as Chairman, Wapic Insurance Plc, whilst Bode Osunkoya is appointed Chairman, Wapic Life Assurance Ltd The Board and Management of Wapic Insurance today announced the appointment of Mutiu Sunmonu CON as the Chairman of its Board of Directors and Bababode Osunkoya as Chairman of its subsidiary, Wapic Life Assurance Ltd. By this appointment, Sunmonu and Osunkoya succeed Aigboje Aig-Imoukhuede CON, who retired effective April 27, 2020 after 8 years of diligent and committed service to both organisations. Read more

NEM Insurance Plc- Notice of Board Meeting and Closed Period for 2020 Q1 Accounts
We write to notify The Nigerian Stock Exchange (The Exchange), our stakeholders and the investing public that the meeting of the Board of Directors of NEM Insurance Plc (the Company) is scheduled to hold on Monday, May 11, 2020 to consider amongst other things, the Unaudited Accounts and Financial Statements for the period ended March 31, 2020. Read moreWAPIC INSURANCE PLC– Letter to Stakeholders Board Succession Communication
I wish to inform you that I have come to the end of my tenure as the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Wapic Insurance and its subsidiary – Wapic Life Assurance Ltd. Accordingly, I will be retiring from the Board of both companies effective April 27, 2020. Serving as Chairman of the Board of Directors of Wapic Insurance and Wapic Life Assurance over the past 8 years, has been quite challenging but most fulfilling and has strengthened my belief in the capacity for ordinary people to come together and achieve extraordinary things. Read more

Africa Prudential Plc – AGM
We write to formally notify the investing public and The Exchange that the 7th Annual General Meeting of Africa Prudential Plc scheduled to hold by Proxy on Tuesday, April 28, 2020 at 11.00 am in line with Guidelines issued by the Corporate Affairs Commission, would now be held virtually via Zoom, an Online Meetings Platform. Read more
Law Union & Rock Insurance PLC – Notice of Board Meeting and Closed Period
We hereby give Notice that a meeting of the Board of Directors of Law Union Insurance PLC (the Company) will hold on Tuesday, 12th May 2020, via videoconferencing to consider the Company’s Q1 2020 Unaudited Financial Statement. Read more

United Capital Plc – AGM
We write to formally notify the investing public and The Exchange that the 2020 Annual General Meeting of United Capital Plc scheduled to hold by Proxy on Tuesday, April 28, 2020 at 11.00 am in line with Guidelines issued by the Corporate Affairs Commission, would now be held virtually via Zoom, an Online Meetings Platform. Read more

FCMB GROUP PLC appoints a new NonExecutive Director
FCMB Group Plc hereby announces the appointment of Mrs. ‘Tokunboh Ishmael to its Board as a Non – Executive Director, following the approval of the Central Bank of Nigeria. Mrs. ‘Tokunboh Ishmael is an alumnus of the London Business School and the University of London. She is a Chartered Financial Analyst and a member of the CFA Institute and the board of the African Venture Capital Association. Read more
IMF may approve Nigeria’s $3.4bn loan today
There are indications that the Executive Board of the International Monetary Fund may approve the $3.4bn loan sought by Nigeria on Tuesday (today). Although the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Zainab Ahmed, had on April 6, while announcing that Nigeria had applied for the loan, said the funds were expected within six to 12 weeks, Reuters and Bloomberg reported that the IMF would meet over the request today. Read more
NNPC delays oil export plans, negotiates with producers
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation has delayed publishing its future oil export plans as it negotiates with international oil companies and local players on how to cut output in line with a global deal on production curbs. The official selling prices for Nigerian oil, usually issued in the second or third week of each month, had still not been issued on Monday, according to Reuters. The production cut deal, agreed by the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies, is due to go into effect on May 1. Read more
Four New COVID-19 Measures Announced by President Buhari
President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday extended the COVID-19 lockdown on Lagos, Ogun and the FCT by one week. Although the lockdown will be gradually lifted from May 4, he announced four new measures that will ensure the COVID-19 virus spread is mitigated. To be sure, these new measures will only start to apply after May 4 and will not apply to Kano, which has been locked down for two weeks. The new measures include an overnight curfew, a ban on interstate travel, a partial and controlled ban on interstate movement of goods and the mandatory use of face-masks, physical distancing and personal hygiene. Read more
Nigeria Reports 64 New Cases Of COVID-19, Total Infections Now 1,337
Nigeria on Monday recorded 64 new cases of the novel coronavirus, bringing the country’s total infections to 1337, according to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC). According to the NCDC in a tweet via its official handle, 34 of the new infections were recorded in Lagos, 15 in the FCT, 11 in Borno, and 2 each in Taraba and Gombe. The country’s total deaths from the virus still stand at 40 while 255 have recovered. The novel coronavirus has claimed at least 208,973 lives since its outbreak in China in December, according to a tally from official sources compiled by AFP at 1900 GMT on Monday. Read more
Global coronavirus cases pass three million as lockdowns begin to ease
Global confirmed coronavirus cases surpassed 3 million on Monday, as the United States neared 1 million cases, according to a Reuters tally. It comes as many countries are taking steps to ease lockdown measures that have brought the world to a standstill over the past eight weeks. The first 41 cases were confirmed in Wuhan, China, on Jan. 10. The 3 million confirmed infections in less than four months are comparable in number with the roughly 3-5 million cases of severe illness caused by seasonal influenza around the world each year, according to the World Health Organisation. Read more
Lockdown ease: Buhari issues directives to CBN, financial institutions
President Muhamadu Buhari has directed the Central Bank of Nigeria to make plans for financial stimulus packages for Nigerians. Buhari made this known during a live broadcast on Monday. The president had earlier eased the lockdown in Abuja, Lagos and Ogun States. He also assured that security and safety remains the primary concern. He said, “I have directed the Central Bank of Nigeria and other financial institutions to make further plans and provisions for financial stimulus packages for small and medium scale enterprises. We recognise the critical role that they play in Nigeria’s economy. Read more
Be ready to pay higher for fuel –PPPRA
Nigerians should be ready to pay high or low prices for petrol following the price liberalisation scheme currently in place, the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency said on Monday. The PPPRA is also engaging with the Central Bank of Nigeria to determine the applicable foreign exchange rates for the importation of petroleum products by oil marketers. Read more
Recapitalise Discos or risk complete power sector collapse –TCN
The Transmission Company of Nigeria has said the nation’s power sector will collapse completely if urgent steps are not taken to capitalise the distribution companies. The government-owned TCN stated this while announcing a drop in the amount of electricity taken by Abuja Electricity Distribution Company on Saturday night. It said, “As at 7:00pm on April 25, due to rainfall, Abuja dropped load and was off-taking only 0.5MW and 16MW from TCN’s 330kV substations in Katampe and Gwagwalada respectively. Read more
Oil prices dive as world runs low on storage capacity while demand plunges
Oil prices slumped again on Tuesday amid concern about dwindling crude storage capacity worldwide and fears that fuel demand may only recover slowly once countries ease curbs imposed on economic and social activity to combat the coronavirus pandemic. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude CLc1 futures fell to as low as $10.64 a barrel on Tuesday, and were off 13%, or $1.66, at $11.12 a barrel as of 0432 GMT. WTI plunged 25% on Monday. Brent crude LCOc1 futures fell to a low of $18.85 and were last down 4.5%, or 90 cents, at $19.09 a barrel. The benchmark slid 6.8% on Monday, and the contract for June delivery expires on April 30. Read more
Asian shares fall on fresh rout in crude prices
Asian shares and U.S. stock futures dipped into the red on Tuesday, erasing earlier gains as a renewed decline in oil prices overshadowed optimism about the easing of coronavirus-related restrictions seen globally. MSCI’s broadest index of Asia-Pacific shares outside Japan. MIAPJ0000PUS was down 0.3%. Shares in China .CSI300 fell 0.7% and South Korean shares .KS11 fell 0.22%. Oil futures slumped after the largest U.S. oil exchange-traded fund said it would sell all its front-month crude contracts to avoid further losses as prices collapse. Read more
U.S. Fed extends help on bond-buying to smaller cities and counties
The Federal Reserve on Monday broadened its help for local governments, offering to buy bonds of up to three years’ duration from counties with as few as 500,000 residents and cities with as few as 250,000 residents. The initial population size limits of 2 million for counties and 1 million for cities had restricted the Fed program to about two dozen of the largest local governments when it was announced earlier this month. That led to complaints, particularly among Democratic lawmakers, that institutions in the front line of the pandemic fight might, because of cratering tax revenues, be forced to choose between essential health services and basic services like police and fire protection. Read more
Gold Down as Loosed Lockdown Measures Increase Investors’ Risk Appetite
Gold was down on Wednesday in Asia with some countries announcing the loosening of months-long COVID-19 lockdown measures. Gold futures fell 0.53% to $1,714.70 by 11:28 PM ET (4:28 AM GMT) as increased risk appetite caused investors to retreat from the yellow metal. Investors will also be paying close attention as the U.S. Federal Reserve ends its meeting on Wednesday and the European Central Bank meets on Thursday. Some investors were positive that gold would continue to uphold its safe-haven reputation. Read more
Dollar Gains with More Countries Loosening Lockdown Measures
The dollar was up on Tuesday morning in Asia with more countries loosening strict lockdown measures put in place to curb the COVID-19 virus. The U.S. Dollar Index that tracks the greenback against a basket of other currencies slipped 0.09% to 100.185 by 11:59 AM ET (4:59 AM GMT) clawed back its losses from the previous session with investors’ increased risk appetite pushing the dollar up. The USD/JPY pair was also up 0.07% to 107.30 even as Japan recorded its highest March unemployment rate in a year. The AUD/USD pair fell 0.35% to 0.6441 as the AUD gave up some of its earlier gains. Read more

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