• President Muhammadu Buhari has requested the National Assembly to approve ₦242 billion requested by INEC and the security agencies for the 2019 elections. In a previous letter, Buhari said of the total sum, ₦164 billion would be drawn from the 2018 supplementary budget, while ₦78 billion would form part of the 2019 budget of these agencies. But in his letter yesterday, he requested that the entire ₦242 billion be considered for inclusion in his virement request under the 2018 Appropriation Act, and reminded the lawmakers that the Joint Committee of the National Assembly told the Minister of Budget and National Planning, Udo Udoma, that it would be willing to consider accommodating the total amount required for the election, should the president make a formal request.
  • Investor sentiment on Nigerian stocks remained bearish Wednesday as sell pressure in NIGERIAN BREWERIES (-2.8%), FBNH (-2.7%) and TRANSCOHOT (-9.6%) pulled the All Share Index 0.1 per cent lower to 32,382.58 points worsening the year-to-date loss to -15.3 per cent. The market had closed 0.08 per cent lower Tuesday on account of sell pressure in consumer good counters. Wednesday’s performance consequently led to a ₦12.8 trillion loss in market capitalisation, the ASI closing the day at ₦11.8 trillion. Activity level was mixed as volume traded declined 61.5 per cent to 134.5 million units while value traded improved 32.2 per cent to close at ₦1.9 billion.
  • The FG is considering ₦24,000 as the new minimum wage for workers in the country. Minister of Labour, Chris Ngige, said that after the NLC strike was suspended, the tripartite committee comprising the FG, Labour and Organised Private Sector met. While the NLC lowered its demand to ₦30,000, the OPS recommended ₦25,000 as the new wage. The FG then consulted with the 36 state governors, who pushed for ₦20,000. All parties involved, are yet to reach a conclusion. The minimum wage was last increased by the Goodluck Jonathan administration in 2011 from N₦7500 to ₦18,000.
  • Stanbic IBTC has deployed robotics to handle some segment of its operations. The Stanbic IBTC BlueBots have been deployed to manage middle and back office activities at some selected branches across Lagos. At the bank’s operational centre in Ilupeju, Lagos, the robots will facilitate Account Origination and Servicing for Anti-Money Laundering transactions, Processing and Clearing for inward cheque confirmation, while at the Idejo, Victoria Island office, the Credit Risk Management System robots will handle Personal Banking Credit assessments. At the bank’s headquarters in Lagos, the robots will be deployed in Global Market Operations to manage T-Bills processing. This deployment adds to the growing lists of Artificial Intelligence applications financial institutions in the country. Diamond Bank and UBA have deployed Chatbots for rendering banking services to customers in a bid to improve customer banking experience. Diamond Bank has just announced that its Chatbot, ADA will now be deployed into stock trading.
  • The Senate has confirmed the appointment of Folashodun Shonubi as the Deputy Director of the CBN, and Muiz Banire as the Chairman of the governing board of AMCON. Shonubi was confirmed by the Senate after the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Banking, Insurance and other Financial Institutions, Rafiu Ibrahim, presented a report which was considered. Despite rejection from three senators, Olamilekan Solomon (Lagos West), Oluremi Tinubu (Lagos Central), and Gbenga Ashafa (Lagos East), Banire was confirmed after the report from the same committee was considered. Banire was nominated by President Buhari on July 18.