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Cost of lending to rise as inflation surges to 19.64% in July

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CONSUMERS in Nigeria would likely be paying more for goods as inflation surges to 19.64 per cent in July, according to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS)

The NBS said this today in its consumer price index (CPI) report for July 2022.

The CPI, which measures the rate of change in prices of goods and services, surged to 19.64 per cent in July 2022, up from 18.60 per cent in the previous month.


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The development indicates a 1.82 per cent month-on-month increase,  and the highest ever inflation rate recorded since September 2005.

Analysts say that with the development, the cost of lending by banks to businesses is not unexpected to rise further.

“By implication, those who have their monies in the bank would pay higher interest cost, and cost of funds for businesses would be higher now, crowding out small and medium scale enterprises,” an economist with the International Labour Organisation (ILO) Celestine Okeke, told THE ICIR.

Okeke stressed that Nigeria had boxed itself into a corner with poor management, saying the Central Bank of Nigeria’s lending to the Federal government through ways and means also intensified the current inflationary pressure.

“You saw the lending to the Federal government by the Central Bank of Nigeria at N20 trillion passing the required threshold. You saw when the governors forum went to the President to ask that it should be converted to 100 years bond. This government managed this economy poorly and people are bearing the brunt through surging inflation,” he said.

The NBS explained that the headline inflation rate in July 2022 was 1.817 per cent, month-on-month, which was 0.001 per cent higher than the 1.816 per cent recorded in June 2022.

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“The percentage change in the average CPI for the twelve-month period ending July 2022 over the average of the CPI for the previous twelve-month period was 16.75 per cent, showing a 0.46 per cent increase compared to 16.30 per cent recorded in July 2021,” the report read.

Another economist, Michael Ani, said the government may not have easy access to borrow from eurobond because of the weak performance of the economy, hence, it may resort to domestic borrowing through domestic bonds.

Ani said, “The economy is poorly managed and its impact is already being felt with the the high cost of goods and lending from banks. Small scale businesses are likely to feel the impact more as they are likely to be crowded out in lending.”

 

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Harrison Edeh is a journalist with the International Centre for Investigative Reporting, always determined to drive advocacy for good governance through holding public officials and businesses accountable.

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