Again, CBN Shifts MPC Under Cardoso

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The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has again, postponed the meeting of its Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) scheduled for this week, the second time since Governor Olayemi Cardoso assumed duty, giving an indication that the new leadership may not have had the grasp of banking regulatory functions.

Cardoso assumed duty on his confirmation by the Senate in September and he was expected to chair the meeting of the MPC for that month. He however postponed the meeting.

The second postponement of the MPC meeting came barely some days after the Bankers’ Committee which was held last Thursday in Lagos ended without monetary issues or the vision of the Governor of the bank being discussed. Participants at the meeting disclosed to InsideBusinessNG that it was just a mere meeting with no agenda.

“For the first time in the history of the meeting, the Bankers’ Committee discussed no issue. It was just a familiarisation meeting between the CBN Governor and the managing directors of banks present”, stated a managing director of a bank who was present.

In January 2020, the first MPC meeting of the year was postponed from January 20-21 to January 23-24. The CBN did not provide a reason for the postponement, but the delay resulted from the upcoming general elections in Nigeria.

However, the MPC is expected to be held November 20-21, 2023.

The “MPC is not holding” a meeting this week, Isa Abdulmumin, a spokesman for the bank, said by text message on Monday obtained by Bloomberg.

He didn’t give a date for when the next meeting would be held.

Analysts at Cordros Research had predicted a possible increase in interest rates by at least 100 basis points.

They noted that interest rates or MPR remain the key signalling tool for market interest rates and inflationary pressures have remained intact.

“Consequently, we expect the MPC to increase the MPR by at least 100 basis points at its November policy meeting,” they expressed in a new report during the weekend.

Investors have been looking to the MPC meeting for signals on how the central bank will rein in inflation which is accelerating at the fastest pace in almost two decades. They’re also anticipating an update on the overhaul of the nation’s foreign-exchange controls initiated by President Bola Tinubu in June.