Nigeria’s central bank unexpectedly raised its benchmark interest rate for the first time in almost six years to curb accelerating inflation.
The monetary policy committee voted to hike the rate by 150 basis points to 13%, Governor Godwin Emefiele said Tuesday in a televised briefing in the capital, Abuja. Only two of 10 economists in a Bloomberg survey forecast an increase.
“While it may seem contradictory to raise rates in the face of fragile growth, it is a dilemma that most central banks around the world today are grappling with at this time,” Emefiele said. “On balance, it is quite clear and compelling that attacking inflation is more urgent in the sequence of policy objectives in this regard.”