Economic activities decline amid recession fears –

Respite for the troubled economy seems nowhere in sight, as the monthly survey of the Statistics Department of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) shows sustained decline in activities.

The latest survey, Purchasing Managers Index (PMI), again recorded declining levels of production, new orders, employment and raw material inventories, in the build up to the release of the second quarter Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

Specifically, the manufacturing index, which rose marginally to 44.1 index points in July 2016, compared to 41.9 in June, is still below the basic level.Meanwhile, the Federal Government has concluded plans to raise N245.18bn worth of Treasury Bills, with maturities ranging from three months to one year.

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), which will act on behalf of government, is billed to issue N45.18bn for three-month debt; N80bn for six-month bill; and N120bn for one-year instrument. All will be through the Dutch auction system.

Already, indications show that the rates for the instrument might be 16 per cent for the three-month; 18 per cent, six months and 18.5 per cent, one-year bills.

Recently, yields on fixed income securities have been rising, with the Central Bank mopping up naira liquidity in efforts to lure foreign investors who sold naira assets as a result of the oil price crisis.