Nigeria’s foreign exchange reserves depleted by as much as $303 million over the past six weeks, data from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has shown.
Recall that the country’s external reserves did peak at $43.2 billion by January 2019, after suffering a major setback in Q4 2018. However, the recorded success was short-lived because, the CBN data revealed how there was a free fall in the external reserve between January ending and March 2019.
According to the CBN’s data, the external reserves stood at $42.8 billion as of March 12th, 2019, representing a $303 million decline.
Recent Drop in Buffer
Over the last six weeks, the external reserve reached its highest level on January 30th when it stood at $43.2 billion. As of February 5th, 2019, it had dropped to $42.9 billion.
The drop continued by mid-February, when the external reserves stood at $42.8 billion. Notably, an all-time low for the nation’s external reserve in the last 6 weeks was February 27th, when it stood at $42.3 billion.
Freefall in external Reserves during Presidential election
The last decline in external reserve happened by the end of February 2019. As you should know, this period coincided with the Presidential elections in Nigeria.
Between February 15th and March 4th, 2019, the external reserves had dropped by $520 million. On the 15th of February, it stood at $42.8 billion, only to drop to $42.3 billion on March 3rd, 2019.
Notably, between 22nd and 25th of February 2019, external reserves depleted by $148 million. Also, note that this period was the weekend of Nigeria’s presidential election.
In the meantime, it is beginning to rise again
The country’s reserve has relatively been on the rise. While the external reserve stood at $42.3 billion on March 3rd, it rose to $42.8 billion on the 12th of March.