By Adedapo Adesanya
The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has postponed the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting yet again after the same was done in September.
This development indicates that the new Governor of the CBN, Mr Olayemi Cardoso, has yet to hold the crucial rates-setting meeting since he took over the post.
The central bank postponed the meeting when Mr Cardoso was nominated to the post in September, signalling that when he takes over, this will be his first order of business.
But with almost two months at the helm of affairs at the national lender, there seems to be no direction regarding the country’s monetary policies.
“MPC is not holding,” said Mr Isa Abdulmumin, the spokesman for the bank, in a text message on Monday, according to Bloomberg.
Prior to the cancellation, the CBN website had scheduled the next gathering for Monday (today) and Tuesday.
The CBN spokesman didn’t give a date for when the next meeting will be held.
Since the last MPC meeting in July which saw the rate put at 18.75 per cent, the monetary policy space has changed rapidly.
Investors have been looking to the MPC meeting for signals on how the lender will rein inflation that’s accelerating at the fastest pace in almost two decades. Nigeria’s inflation jumped to a fresh 18-year high of 27.33 per cent in October, according to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) last week.
In a related development, Cordros Capital, in a report released last week, had forecast that the CBN would further hike its Monetary Policy Rate (interest rate) by 100 basis points this week.
The firm said it expects that ‘’further rate hikes by the MPC will send a strong message that the apex bank is not relenting in its inflation fight, particularly as near-term inflation expectations are tilted to the upside, potentially reaching a 28.02 per cent y/y peak in December.’’