A New Economic Outlook Report from FBN Capital Indicates Continued Growth for Nigeria in 2015

FBN

In the new Economic Outlook Report for August 2014, FBN Capital Limited, the investment banking and asset management subsidiary of FBN Holdings Plc, predicts continued growth and strength in the Nigerian economy for the remainder of 2014 and continuing into 2015 as we move towards the election year.

In the new Economic Outlook Report for August 2014, FBN Capital Limited, a subsidiary of FBN Holdings Plc (FBHN: NL), predicts continued growth and strength in the Nigerian economy for the remainder of 2014 and continuing into 2015 as we move towards the high point of the electoral cycle.

While the upcoming presidential elections in February 2015 do present a level of uncertainty, the report states that the coming years are expected to represent continued growth as Nigeria’s strong GDP growth indicates robust household consumption. Sizeable investment plans and the visual evidence, in the form of hotels, shopping malls, private housing developments and car showrooms, indicate that Nigeria’s economy is on the rise.

Nigeria’s robust growth story remains intact, as the country’s GDP (oil and non-oil growth) has exceeded 4% year on year since 2000, and it is anticipated that that growth will return to above 7% next year. This strong growth has been driven by the non-oil sector, which has seen an average growth of 10.1% y/y in the past eight quarters, with the highest growth in the following four sectors: accommodation and food services, motion pictures and sound recording, construction and broadcasting. FBN Capital sees oil production at 2.25 million barrels per day for the coming year, and while that number is below the current year’s budget assumptions, it still represents a production recovery over the past year’s output.

According to Gregory Kronsten, Head of Macro Economic Research at FBN Capital, “The non-oil growth averaged 10.1% y/y in the past eight quarters. Household consumption has driven this growth. Its evidence is abundant: the boom in mobile telephony, the beginnings of mobile banking and e-commerce, the rapid expansion of the financial sector (despite the twin bailouts of 2009), infrastructure spending by the more professional state governments such as Lagos, residential development, hotel building in the main centers and the construction of shopping malls. The common factor is the rise in private consumption,”

With regards to exchange rates, while the new Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has the same policy stance as his predecessors on exchange-rate and price stability, FBN Capital is optimistic that the CBN can “hold the line subject to a small adjustment to the mid-point at some point in 2015.” In addition, as FGN bond yields have settled in a range of 11.0% to 12.5% and remain among the highest anywhere for local markets of comparable liquidity, the report predicts little change to this range in the quarters ahead.

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