By Babajide Komolafe
The naira further depreciated by five kobo at the official segment on Wednesday due to nine per cent upsurge in demand.
Results of the Wholesale Dutch Auction System (WDAS) session conducted by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) showed that demand rose to $307.67 million from $282.61 million on Monday.
The amount sold by the CBN, however, dropped marginallyÂ to $250 million from $256.6 million.Â Consequently, the official exchange rate rose to N148.35 per dollar from N148.3 per dollar on Monday.
The demand pressure in the official market was further indicated in the highest bid rate which rose to N148.59 per dollar from N148.55 per dollar.
The naira had, on Monday depreciated by five kobo following 34 per cent upsurge in demand at the WDAS session.
Demand rose to $282 million from $209 million the previous week.
The official exchange rate rose to N148.3 from N148.25 per dollar,Â impling that the naira had depreciated by 10 kobo in the official market this week.
Total foreign exchange demand at the two WDAS rose by 38 per cent to $590.28 million from $367.6 million.
Total amount sold also rose by 37 per cent to $506.6 million from $367.6 million.
However, at the interbank foreign exchange market, the naira gained seven kobo as the interbank rate dropped to N150.34 on Wednesday from N150.41 the previous week.
The marginal appreciation of the naira at the interbank market despite the demand pressure at the official market was due to foreign exchange sales by oil firms which boosted foreign exchange supply during the week.
OnÂ the international scene, the dollar and yen fell against most of their major counterparts as a bigger-than-expected increase in U.S. retail sales last month spurred demand for higher-yielding assets.
Singaporeâ€™s dollar climbed to the strongest level versus the greenback since August 2008 after the Monetary Authority unexpectedly revalued the currency in the latest sign that China may let its yuan strengthen.
The dollar erased its gain versus the yen as Federal Reserve Chairman, Ben S. Bernanke, told Congress that U.S. economic expansion will remain moderate.
â€œThe global recovery is still on track,â€ said Brian Dolan, chief currency strategist at FOREX.com, a unit of online currency trading firm Gain Capital in Bedminster, New Jersey. â€œRisk is on, and the yen is a sell.â€
The dollar declined 0.4 percent to $1.3664 per euro at 12:59 p.m. in New York, from $1.3614 yesterday.
The yen slid 0.2 per cent to 127.17 per euro, from 126.88, after reaching 127.68, the weakest level since April 5.
The dollar dropped 0.2 percent to 93.05 yen, from 93.20, after earlier gaining 0.6 per cent.
Australiaâ€™s dollar advanced 0.5 per cent to 87.05 yen and Brazilâ€™s real appreciated 0.3 per cent to 1.7448 per U.S. dollar on speculation evidence of a global economic recovery will encourage investors to increase carry trades, in which they buy higher-yielding assets with amounts borrowed in nations with low interest rates.