Go Cashless This Summer with FirstBank Visa Multi Currency Card

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First Bank of Nigeria Limited, Nigeria’s premier and leading financial services provider, has introduced the Visa Multi Currency Card, an All-in One-Card and first of its kind to be offered by any financial institution in Nigeria. This card can be linked to all of four currencies namely: NAIRA, USD, EURO and GBP accounts.

With the Visa Multi-Currency card, FirstBank customers – within and outside Nigeria – can now
enjoy the luxury of having their local and foreign denominated accounts in any currency, linked
to a single Debit card. The Visa Multi-Currency Card is designed to ease the daily cashless
transactional needs of customers regardless of where they are across the world.

Amongst the many benefits of the Visa Multi-Currency card are Point of Sale and Online
purchases, access to and use of ATMs worldwide. There is no cash collateral requirement prior
to its issuance.

Speaking on the card launch, Mr. Chuma Ezirim, Group Executive, e-Business & Retail Product  said;

“FirstBank takes pride in pioneering the Visa Multi Currency Card in the country, as we
remain committed to providing products and services that are designed to ensure the banking
convenience of our customers regardless of their location.”

“This card is designed to make traveling fun for our customers and ensure they have a
seamless transaction experience during their vacation, tourism and other business-related trips
around the globe”, he concluded.

Traveling abroad for summer ? , walk into any FirstBank branch today for your Visa Multi Currency

About FirstBank

First Bank of Nigeria Limited (FirstBank) is the premier Bank in West Africa and the leading
banking services solutions provider in Nigeria for 125 years. With some 15 million customer
accounts, FirstBank provides a comprehensive range of retail and corporate financial services
with over 750 business locations. …

How CBN’s new lending guidelines will reshape banking sector

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A new lending directive in Nigeria holds the promise of boosting commercial bank credit to cash-strapped businesses but puts the loan book quality of the lenders at risk.

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) on Wednesday said it was mandating deposit money banks to have a Loan to Deposit Ratio (LDR) of 60 percent by the end of September 2019 in an effort to force banks to lend in an economy still reeling from a contraction in 2016 that caused bad loans to surge.

The new directive means banks must use at least 60 percent of their deposits for loans, 150 basis points higher than the industry average of 58.5 percent as at May.

According to the apex bank, a failure to meet the minimum LDR of 60 percent by the specified date will result in a levy of additional Cash Reserve Requirement (a specified minimum fraction of the total deposits of customers, which commercial banks have to hold as reserves with the central bank) equal to 50 percent of the lending shortfall of the target LDR.

The LDR is a ratio between a bank’s total loans and total deposits, and is generally expressed in percentage terms. A high loan to deposit ratio means that the bank is issuing out more of its deposits in loans and vice-versa.

“On one hand, this is a good development that should encourage banks to increase their lending, especially to the private sector,” said Taiwo Oyedele, an economist and head of tax and regulatory services at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC).

“On the other hand, the risk is that the quality of banks’ loan portfolio may deteriorate in an attempt to meet the target at all cost thereby resulting in relatively high non-performing loan ratio,” Oyedele said. “The CBN therefore needs to ensure … Read More...

CBN to intensify financial literacy, consumer protection programmes

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As part of its policy thrust in the next five years, Nigerian apex bank, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), will intensify its financial literacy and consumer protection programmes, Godwin Emefiele, governor of the CBN, said in Abuja at a press interactive session.

“We will intensify our financial literacy and consumer protection programmes such that current and eligible bank customers are fully aware of the financial services being offered to them as well as the cost of utilising these services, which will enable them to make well-informed choices,” Emiefele said.

“Besides providing valuable information to banking customers, we are committed to developing and enforcing strong rules to protect consumers. Our banking supervisory and consumer protection department at the CBN will ensure that dispute resolution mechanism in financial institutions are not only efficient but also timely, in order to maintain the confidence of the Nigerian populace in the utilisation of banking services,” he further said.

Hitherto, the CBN has stepped up concern for the interest of bank customers across the country. Since last quarter of last year, it has made some strides. CBN has been  accepted  into the International  Financial Consumer  Protection Organisation(FinConNet); it coordinated the convening of a National Financial Literacy Conference to galvanise all regulatory agencies in the financial sector towards educating more Nigerians on managing finances to improve their financial capability and increasing financial inclusion towards achieving the 2020 80percent financial inclusion target.

According to our findings, to achieve effective and timely resolution of consumer complaints, the CBN has deployed a Consumer Complaints Management System which is used to monitor consumer complaints submitted to the banks by their customers.

 Moreover, the CBN has commenced collaborating with a number of advocacy groups on consumer protection. It is expected that consumer protection activities will be … Read More...

Will Central Bank’s war on smugglers, be a boon for consumer firms

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Analysts are of the view that Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN)’s decision to weigh on smuggling may ameliorate the pains of consumer goods firms that are struggling with weaker margins and poor declining profit.

For instance, the combined revenue of the largest companies in the country fell by 3.06 percent to N419.4 billion in March 2019, from N435 billion the previous year, according to data gathered by BusinessDay.

Similarly, profit after tax also followed the same downward slope as it dipped by 27.79 percent to N26.82 billion March 2019 as against N37.24 billion the previous year.

Net profit margin, a measure of profitability and efficiency, fell to 6.04 percent to 6.0 percent in the period under review as against 9.17 percent the previous year.

When the net profit margin falls, it means a company isn’t good at converting revenue into profits available for shareholders.

Smuggling and influx of cheap and substantial products are cannibalizing the sales of some companies, and the regulator has said the scourge is undermining economic growth.

In order to curtail block these loopholes, the Governor, CBN, Godwin Emefiele,  has said the bank has blocked the accounts of some smugglers sabotaging Nigeria’s economy in the textile, rice and palm oil industry.

Emefiele said the bank will come up with the names of those identified but they want to be sure that they have come up with something that is credible and that the culprits cannot deny. He added that the accounts of some in the textile, rice and palm oil industries had been blocked.

The regulator banned certain items (including Textile, Fertilizers, Palm Oil etc.) from accessing FX from the official window in bid to encourage local industrial production and subdue the foreign exchange crunch of 2014-2017. It also established the Importers’ and … Read More...

CBN signals convergence of FX, stops official rate on website 

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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) is showing signal of exchange rate convergence as it has declared its official rate “market determined”.

The move will allow the naira to weaken past its official rate as it gradually unwinds its regime of multiple exchange rates.

Naira traded and closed at the rate if N360.63 per dollar at the investors and exporters foreign exchange window and N360/$ at the Bureau De Change (BDC)/parallel market.

The regulator usually publish on its website, the inflation rate numbers, exchange rate to USD, Monetary Policy Rate (MPR), and crude oil numbers, but as at Tuesday, the exchange rate numbers has been removed and replaced with “the naira exchange rate is market determined”.

Godwin Emefiele, governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had last month at Ibadan said Nigeria does not operate multiple exchange rate but has multiple foreign exchange window.

The Nigeria’s foreign exchange windows include the investors and exporters forex window, the inter-bank window, the official, the window for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), business travel allowance (BTA) and Personal travel allowance (PTA).

Emefiele said the foreign exchange has substantially converged at N360 per dollar at the Nigerian Autonomous Foreign Exchange (NAFEX) window and Bureau De Change (BDC) segment of the market.

The CBN on Tuesday CBN injected a total of $210 million into the inter-bank forex market.
Figures obtained from the CBN indicated that authorized dealers in the wholesale segment of the market were offered the sum of $100million, while the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) segment received the sum of $55 million. The sum of $55 million was allocated to customers requiring foreign exchange for invisibles such as tuition fees, medical payments and Basic Travel Allowance (BTA), among others.

Confirming the figures, the Director, Corporate Communications Department, … Read More...