When he was sworn in as governor in 2015, Mr. Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom State, made it clear that his election was an event of some importance. He said “the Akwa Ibom people had come together not to celebrate the triumph of a party, but to celebrate the victory of hope.”
 
He promised “to transform the economy of our state via industrialization and sustain public-private Sector initiative, thereby opening up opportunities for growth and improved living standards.” More than three years after, he has achieved what he promised especially in agricultural sector.
 
Governor Udom Emmanuel has taken a bold step to secure the future of Akwa Ibom State through agriculture in the event that oil ceases to yield as much revenue as it does today. Fortunately, Akwa Ibom state is blessed with arable land and favourable climate that supports all-year-round cultivation and extraction of agricultural and forest products such as palm produce, rubber, cocoa, rice, cassava, yam, plantain, banana, maize, and timber.
 
Through his policy in agriculture, his administration is creating food security, industrial hubs and massive job opportunities for the people of Akwa Ibom. The state is being transformed from one that is heavily dependent on federal allocations to one that generates revenue and earns foreign exchange through agriculture, a vision that Nigeria, even with all its resources still find difficult to achieve.
 
Visionary administration:
 
Udom Emmanuel’s visionary administration from the onset, declared a state of emergency in the agricultural sector, targeting food sufficiency, welfare of the people, export and economic development of the state. With prevailing high cost of living, this couldn’t have come at a better time even as pervasive poverty and hunger ravage the country. It couldn’t have come at a better time than when quality leadership is in short supply.
 
Although its rural communities are largely agrarian, relying on subsistent agriculture, their enormous potentials are now being harnessed for commercial and mechanised farming in cash crops like yam, coconut, plantain, maize, rice, tomatoes, cucumber and rubber as well as animal production, poultry and fish farming.
 
The revolution has, no doubt, taken the state by storm. For instance, the state has created an 11, 000 hectares of coconut plantation. With about two million stands of coconut already planted, the plantation is said to be the largest in the world. It will feed raw materials to the coconut refinery, and at full capacity, the refinery would process 300, 000 coconuts per day. This is a huge foreign exchange earner as virgin coconut oil is a highly priced product in the international market, selling higher than crude oil.
 
The state has also achieved 2,100 hectares of cassava plantation in 15 Local Government Areas under the FADAMA programme. To complement that, the government embarked on the construction of 33 cassava micro processing mills.
 
To take it a step further, the government embarked on refurbishment of cassava processing plants at Ikot Okudom, Eket Local Government Area, Nung Udoe, Ibesikpo/Asutan Local Government Area as well as Ikot Ekang in Abak council area. These factories were leased to private sector operators for the production of high quality garri, odourless fufu and cassava flour.
 
Under the Udom Emmanuel administration, 48,000 rice farmers have so far been registered under the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Anchor Borrowers scheme. So far, over 100 hectares of rice farmland have been cultivated.
 
As a result of its commercial value, coupled with the comparative advantage Akwa Ibom State has in the production of cocoa, the Udom Emmanuel administration has so far, trained 450 youths in new methods of planting cocoa and other extension services to its farmers in the state. The state went further to establish Special Cocoa Maintenance Scheme (SCMS) for the training of farmers and youths on pruning/shade management, under brushing, and tree care by fumigation, in order to ensure the improved yields from 300 kg/hectare to 2, 000kg/hectare over a period of  three years.
 
About 500, 000 improved cocoa seedlings were raised for distribution to farmers at highly subsidised rates across the 28 cocoa producing Local Government Areas in the state.
 
In poultry business, the Akwa Prime Hatchery, located at Mbiaya, Uruan has produced and distributed about 160, 000 birds to contract farmers across the state. The Hatchery has a capacity to produce 10, 000 day-old-chicks per week. The government also embarked on distribution of improved corn seedlings to farmers; Construction of vegetable green houses and cattle ranch.
 
Under the Graduate Unemployment Youth Scheme (GUYS), no fewer than 300 youths have been trained. Each of the young graduates is to be empowered with one million naira to embark on any agricultural enterprise of their choice.
 
In order to boost mechanised farming in the state, the Udom Emmanuel administration also established a Tractor Hiring Enterprise Centre. This is aimed at making such farm equipment available and affordable to farmers.
 
To further illustrate its commitment to the revolution, the administration procured about 600, 000 bags of fertilizers for farmers in the state. In September 2016 alone, 1,000 bags of special cocoa fertilizer were imported from Ghana for optimal yield. The government also planted about 500 citrus seedlings, 600 hybrid plantain suckers and 1, 000 pineapple suckers at the Horticulture Garden in Uyo.
 
Transfer of improved technologies:
 
At Ebighi Anwa, Okobo council area of the state, the government in partnership with the Rubber Research Institute of Nigeria established a large hybrid rubber nursery for distribution to rubber farmers in the state at a highly subsidised rate. It went further to establish demonstration plots of various agricultural technologies for the transfer of improved technologies to farmers through the Akwa Ibom Agricultural Development Programme (AKADEP).
 
Furthermore, the state established three model villages for production, processing and packaging of Vitamin A products as well as partnering Word Bamboo Organisation for bamboo development in the state.
 
In animal production and husbandry, the governor has equally made remarkable progress. It is working in collaboration with Carlos Farms, a Mexican group that has interest in commercial agriculture. The firm is investing in massive commercial farming in Nigeria to develop ranches. The aim is not just cow production but also processing of cow milk for dairy companies in the country.
 
The governor’s giant strides in agriculture is largely indicative of his leadership acumen. No doubt, his versed experience in the private sector and corporate governance has been of great benefit to Akwa Ibom state. His ability to attract private investors and some times, go into Public Private Partnership (PPP) is an indication of a man who has what it takes to be in leadership position.
 

Zainab Ahmed, who is acting minister of finance, said Monday that Nigeria’s economy faced “challenging times” as she formally assumed duty.

President Muhammadu Buhari appointed her to oversee the finance ministry following the the resignation of Kemi Adeosun who resigned over forged certificate of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC).

Ahmed, who is the Minister of State, Budget and National Planning, said the new task would require collaboration with minister officials to achieve success.

Mahmoud Isa-Dutse, permanent secretary and some directors in the ministry, welcomed her.

“These are very challenging times for our country. It means we are part of the economic team that has been charged with making sure there is economic stability in our country,” she said.

“We have very serious revenue challenges and it is up to us to shore up the revenues of this country.

“Mr President has a lot of confidence that we can do this very well together. We are working for Mr President, but at the end of the day we are working for the benefit of the citizens of our country.

“There are a lot of sacrifices that I know that you have done, and we are going to push ourselves to still do more so that at the end of the day we will say Alhamdulillah– glory be to God!

“The finance ministry has overtime been known to have very skilled personnel; from interacting with some of you, I know that there is a lot of skill set within the ministry, and that I am in good hands.

“I plan to work very closely with the whole of the directors, most especially with the permanent secretary.

“I want to declare that today the permanent secretary is my new next-of-kin. What that means is that I am going to work hand-in-gloves with him, and I expect everybody to do the same thing.

“There are some things I know about finance, but there is a lot that I don’t know; and the knowledge resides in you.”

 

Vanguard.

The Nigeria’s inflation rate has rebounded in August for the first time since January 2017 after recording 18 consecutive months of downward trend, according to the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).

In the August inflation report by the statistics bureau on Friday, the nation’s Consumer Price Index (CPI), which measures inflation, rose by 0.09 percent points to 11.23 percent in August.

This implies the prices of goods and services rose at a faster rate in review month – just like June 2018 – when compared with July 2018.

The headline inflation had been on steady decline from 18.72 percent since January 2017 to 11.14 percent in July 2018, this was after it fell to 18.55 percent in December 2016.

In spite of the persistent decline during the period, the macroeconomic variable remained above the Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN) acceptable band of 6 percent to 9 percent.

The CPI measures the composite changes in the prices of consumer goods and services, such as food, transportation, and medical care, purchased by households, over a period.

The NBS said food inflation also surged to 13.16 percent YoY in August up from 12.85 percent recorded in previous month, while core inflation, which excludes agricultural produce, dropped from 10.2 percent in July to 10.0 percent in August.

The CBN had expressed fear over the possibility of a rebound in the macroeconomic indicator in the second half of 2018 as a result of increased spending ahead of the 2019 general elections.

In August, the CBN said it may consider raising its key lending rate for the first time in two years if the inflation rate worsens.

The Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the CBN in its July meeting had retained the Monetary Policy Rate (MPR) at record-high of 14 percent for the 11th consecutive time since 2016 to monitor the magnitude of the liquidity impact of the fiscal injection and election related expenditure.

 

The Ripples.

Following declines in the value of shares of Nestle Nigeria, Guaranty Trust Bank, Zenith Bank and other highly capitalized stocks, the trading activity on the floor of the Nigeria Stock Exchange (NSE) on Monday closed in red to start the week.

The bearishness recorded at the market was as a result of persisted sell pressures on the local bourse, dragging the key performance indicator of the NSE, the All-Share Index (ASI), down by 1.25 percent to close at 34,037.91 points, and plunging the year-to-date loss of the ASI to -12.16 percent.

After the close of business, equities investors lost a total of N155.60 billion in value as market capitalization of all listed stocks, which opened at N12.27 trillion, dropped to N12.43 trillion.

Consequently, the total volume and value of transactions dipped by 11.75 percent and 35.53 percent from 155.95 million shares and N2.1 billion to 137.63 million shares and N1.36 billion, respectively.

Performance across sectors was also bearish, as indices of all major sectors headed to the south. The NSE Consumer Goods index led the sector decliners, falling by 3.69 percent as investors sold off Nestle Nigeria, which dropped by 9.7 percent, and Nigerian Breweries shedding 0.4 percent.

NSE Insurance index trailed with 2.09 percent depreciation on the back of sell-offs in NEM Insurance and Continental Reinsurance, while NSE Banking index dropped by 1.25 percent, driven by sell pressures in Guaranty Trust Bank, Zenith Bank and Access Bank, which fell by 1.4 percent, 1.9 percent and 1.7 percent, respectively.

Similarly, Forte Oil, which shed 9.3 percent, pulled the NSE Oil & Gas index down by 0.52 percent, while NSE Industrial Goods index closed flat amid profit taking activity on Cutix, dropping 0.25 percent of its share value.

Nestle Nigeria led the laggards chart, depreciating by 9.67 percent to close at N1,355 per share. Global Spectrum Energy Services followed by shedding 9.45 percent to close N5.75 per share, while Forte Oil dropped 9.29 percent to close at N19.05 per share.

Regency Alliance Insurance Company lost 8.70 percent to close at 21 Kobo per share, while Japaul Oil fell by 7.69 percent to close at 24 Kobo per share.

On the flip side, Sunu Assurances Nigeria emerged the top gainer with10 percent to close at 22 Kobo per share. Union Diagnostic & Clinical Services trailed by gaining 7.41 percent to close at 29 kobo, while Honeywell Flour garnered 5.56 percent to close at N1.52 per share.

University Press gained 4.17 percent to close at N2 per share, while Mutual Benefits Assurance rose by 3.70 percent to close at 28 Kobo per share.

Guaranty Trust Bank was the most traded stock in value after recording 29 percent of the total investment turnover, reaching 11.25 million volumes of shares valued at N390.94 million.

Nigerian Breweries, which accounted for 26 percent of the total return, traded a total volume of 2.36 million worth N218.80 million, while Zenith Bank sold 6.64 million volume of shares at N136.60 million.

United Bank for Africa traded 16.66 million shares valued at N130.87 million, while Nestle Nigeria transacted 87,930 shares worth N119.77 million.

Analysts at Afrinvest Securities said the market performance reflects investors’ bearish outlook on the market as political risks remain heightened and in addition to continued absence of positive drivers.

In spite of the negative performance, the analysts remained optimistic that some bargain hunting would drive performance in the near term.

 

Vanguard

The Statistician-General of the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), Yemi Kale, said the Nigerian economy could be regarded as a diversified economy based on the Q2 2018 Gross Domestic Product (GDP) figures released recently.

Kale made this disclosure while answering questions on the effectiveness of the Federal Government’s diversification policy in a tweet chat on Thursday.

The NBS boss said the services sector grew by over 50 percent in the second quarter of the year, adding that the performance was the first since the 2016 economic recession.

According to him, the 1.50 percent real GDP growth recorded in Q2 was largely driven by the services sector.

“The best assessment of any plan or policy of government is to look at the underlying statistics. If you look at the GDP numbers for Q2 2018 published early this week by our Office, you will observe that the economy is quite diversified.

“The services sector accounts for over 50% of our economy, and for the first time since the recession, the services sector posted positive numbers and was mainly responsible for the growth recorded during the quarter,” Kale said.

He, however, said the benefits of diversified growth would become more evident and impacting on the citizenry if the government could provide incentives to support domestic production and stimulate consumption.

The NBS had released the GDP report for Q2 2018 on Monday, the report noted that the rate at which the Nigerian economy grew in the quarter slowed to 1.50 percent when compare with 1.95 percent recorded in the previous quarter.

Despite the sluggish growth, the non-oil sector of the economy grew by 2.05 percent from 0.76 percent in Q1 2018, while the oil sector contracted by -3.95 percent from 14.77 percent in Q1 2018.

The Minister of Budget and National Planning, Sen. Udoma Undo Udoma, had said the growth in the non-oil sector was an evidence that the implementation of the targeted policies and programs of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) by the Federal Government was yielding positive results.

The ERGP is a four-year medium term strategic blueprint of the Federal Government aimed at diversifying the economy away from dependence on the oil and gas sector.

The plan covers 2017 to 2020 and focuses on human capital investment, restoration of economic growth, and building a competitive economy.

The Ripples

The nation’s foreign exchange reserves have dropped below $46 billion, available data from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) showed on Wednesday.
 
The reserves, which stood at $47.79 billion as of July 5, fell to $45.98 billion on August 27, the lowest level in five months.
 
According to the CBN data, the external reserves rose from $45.65 billion on March 23 to $46.04 billion on March 26. The increase was sustained as the reserves grew up till $46.79 on May 10 from $46.75 recorded on May 9.
 
Thereafter, the movement in the reserves became inconsistent but reached a high of $47.79 billion on July 5 and had been on steady decline, shedding $1.81 billion in less than two months.
 
Last week, the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) released the capital importation data which saw the total value of capital imported into the country between April and June this year fell by $790 million to $5.51 billion.
 
An analysis of the data by our correspondent showed that the value dropped by 12.53 percent, making the $790 million depreciation the highest since the first quarter of 2016 when the nation’s economy was at the brink of recession.
 
Analysts at FSDH Research, in a Monthly Economic and Financial Markets Outlook, attributed the drop in the nation’s foreign reserves in July which extended to August to the exits of foreign investors from the Nigerian market and the increase in demand of foreign exchange.
 
“The external reserves recorded persistent drawdown in July 2018. This was due to the foreign investors’ pull-back from the Nigerian market and the increase in demand at the foreign exchange market,” the analysts said.
 
Two days ago, the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), in its monthly Domestic and Foreign Portfolio Participation in Equity Trading for July 2018, had said there was a decrease of 64.68 percent in total foreign transactions from N102.41 billion in June 2018 to N36.17 billion in July.
 
Meanwhile, the CBN, yesterday, injected $210 million into the inter-bank foreign exchange market to meet customers’ requests in various segments of the market.
 
Consequently, the naira maintained its stability, exchanging at an average of N361/$ in the Bureau De Change segment of the foreign exchange market.
 
The CBN Acting Director, Corporate Communications Department, Isaac Okorafor, said $100 million was offered to authorised dealers in the wholesale segment of the market, while the Small and Medium Enterprises segment received the sum of $55 million.
 
He said the customers requiring foreign exchange for tuition fees, medical payments and Basic Travel Allowance among others, received $55 million.
 
Okoroafor stressed that the apex bank would continue to intervene in the interbank foreign exchange market in line with its desire to sustain liquidity in the market and maintain stability.
 
Recall that the CBN had last week injected a total sum of $543.22 million and 63.21 million Chinese Yuan into the inter-bank foreign exchange market.
 
 
Source: The Ripples
The Federal Government has unveiled eight firms that will begin the exploration of minerals under the Integrated Exploration Project (IEP).
 
The Minister of State for Mines and Steel Development, Abubakar Bwari, disclosed this recently in Abuja while launching the first IEP which is under the Natural Resources Fund.
 
According to him, the eight firms emerged winners of bid for the exploration project.
 
The minister said the project would be executed by his ministry, stressing that Nigeria’s abundant resources cannot remain untapped.
 
Bwari said it was imperative for the ministry to contribute to the growth of the nation’s economy by industrialising minerals for local consumption and import substitution, using metallic minerals for generating foreign exchange and energy minerals for power generation.
 
“This integrated project is therefore long overdue, and its success will be critical in determining how far government can go in its efforts to reposition the sector.
 
“Actually, the credibility of this ministry, as well as the seriousness with which the international community will evaluate our effort at becoming a viable mining jurisdiction will be dependent on the way we handle this critical project.
“At this juncture, we want to particularly thank all who worked hard to make this event possible. We expect maximum commitment in the execution of this project because a lot is at stake,” the minister said.
 
The minister urged the National Geological Survey Agency (NGSA), which will be supervising the project on behalf of the ministry, to strictly adhere to the job specifications and contractual agreements on a duration of 12 months and also ensure adequate employment of local expertise.
 
“I therefore, expect regular updates on work progress, particularly from the Nigerian Geological Survey Agency which will be supervising this project on behalf of the Ministry. I urge you to strictly adhere to the job specifications and contractual agreements stipulated in the terms of engagement while also ensuring that local expertise is adequately employed,” he added.
 
 
The Ripples
 
The Nigerian Bureau of Statistics (NBS) has reported that for the first time since Nigeria’s exit from recession, the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) has recorded growth.
 
Driven by the non-oil sector, GDP which grew by 2.05 per cent in the second quarters of 2018 represented the strongest growth in non-oil GDP since fourth quarter of 2015.
 
“Non-oil GDP growth was -0.18% in Q1 2016, -0.38% in Q2 2016, 0.03% in Q3 2016, -0.33% in Q4 2016, 0.72% in Q1 2017, 0.45% in Q2 2017, -0.76% in Q3 2017, 1.45% in Q4 2017and 0.76% Q1 2018.
 
“GDP grew strongly in Q2 2018 by 2.05%. Non-oil growth was driven by transportation which grew by 21.76% supported by growth in construction which grew by 7.66% and electricity which grew by 7.59%.
 
“Other non-oil sectors that drove growth in Q2 2018 include telecommunication which grew by 11.51%, water supply and sewage which grew by 11.98% and broadcasting which grew by 21.92%.’’
 
The non-oil sector performance was however constrained by agriculture that grew by 1.3% compared to 3.00% in Q1 2018 and 3.01% in Q2 2017.
 
Q2 2018 GDP growth was also constrained by oil GDP with crude oil and gas production contracting by -3.95% compared to 14.77% in Q1 2018 and 3.53% in Q2 2017
 
Services GDP recorded its best performance in 9 quarters, growing by 2.12% in Q2 2018 compared to -0.47% in Q1 2018 and -0.85% in Q2 2017.
 
Statistician General and Chief Executive Officer of National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), Dr. Yemi Kale, last week denied reports quoting that Nigerian economy had yet to recover from recession.
 
Kale categorically said that Nigeria was out of recession and that at no time did he suggest otherwise.
 
His denial was contained in a statement released on Monday by the Bureau’s Public Relations Officer, Mr. J. Ichedi.
 
NBS said that it reported in the second quarter of 2017 that the country was out of recession as the country recorded the first positive growth in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) following five quarters of contradiction.
 
He said that economic growth as measured by GDP has remained positive ever since with 0.72% in second quarter of 2017; 1.17% in third quarter of 2017; 2.11% in fourth quarter; and 1.95% in first quarter of 2018.
 
Ichedi said that NBS had continued to explain that there would be economic recovery after the recession.
 
The economic after recession moves gradually towards sustainable strong growth which “is the stage we are now’’.
 
This is the position which the CEO told Arise Television in an interview, he said.
 
The CEO, he said, told the television that the economy was in the second state of recovery and heading toward sustainable growth which is the last stage’’.
 
“This should not be wrongly interpreted as the economy is still in recession,’’ Ichedi said.
 
According to a report by a local newspaper on Monday, the Statistician-General was quoted to have lamented the performance of the nation’s economy in the second quarter of the year.
 
 
Source: NAN

Following the two-day holiday declared by the Federal Government to celebrate this year’s Eid-El-Kabir, the stock market resumed on Thursday on a positive note as equities investors gained N198 billion.

The domestic bourse had recorded a bearish performance on Monday as the market capitalisation shed N219 billion to close at N12.66 trillion before the holiday.

But the market rebounded on Thursday as the benchmark index of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE), All-Share Index (ASI), rose by 157 basis points to close at 35,206.16 points from 34,663.48 points recorded on the first trading session of the week.

Specifically, the market capitalisation appreciated to N12.85 trillion from N12.65 trillion, while the year-to-date losses of the ASI stood at 7.99 percent.

However, market breadth weakened as 25 stocks declined as against 11 that gained. The volume of stocks traded at the exchange rose by 0,1 percent, while the value of the stocks fell by 20.59 percent.

A total of volume of 210.71 million stocks valued at N2.53 billion were exchanged in 3,287 deals as against total of 220.49 million stocks worth N3.19 billion traded in 3,054 deals on Monday.

Wapic Insurance was the highest gainer today rising by 8.82 percent to close at 37 Kobo per share. Veritas Kapital Assurance trailed with 7.69 percent gain to close at 28 Kobo per share, while Dangote Cement appreciated by 6.98 percent to close at N230 per share.

Dangote Flour garnered 6.49 percent to close at N8.20 per share, while Oando rose by 5.26 percent to close at N5 per share.

On the other hand, Livestock Feeds led the laggards by shedding 9.84 percent to close at 55 Kobo per share. Red Star Express followed by dropping 9.65 percent to close at N5.15 per share, while Jaiz Bank lost 9.43 percent to close at 48 Kobo per share.

Equity Assurance depreciated by 9.09 percent to close at 20 Kobo per share, while Secure Electronic Technology fell by 8.70 percent to close at 21 Kobo per share.

United Bank for Africa emerged the most traded stock as total turnover hit 54.33 million volume of shares valued at N436.11 million. Zenith Bank followed with a volume of 25.99 million shares worth N571.42 million, while FBN Holdings recorded a volume of 14.19 million shares valued at N138.64 million.

 

Vanguard.

The total value of capital importation into Nigeria dropped by $790 million in the second quarter of 2018, the largest decline in more than two years when the nation’s economy was at the brink of recession.

The capital importation data obtained from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) show that the total value of capital imported into country in the second quarter of 2018 fell to $5.51 billion from $6.30 billion recorded in the preceding quarter.

An analysis of the data by our correspondent showed that the value dropped by 12.53 percent, making the $790 million depreciation the highest since the first quarter of 2016 when capital importation declined by $845.98 million from $1.56 billion.

However, when compared on a year-on-year basis, the total value of capital importation in the review quarter rose by 207.63 percent from $1.79 billion recorded in the second quarter of 2017.

According to the data, Nigeria imported highest capital from United Kingdom, United States of America and the United Arab Emirates with values of imported capital accounting for 32.15 percent, 22.20 percent and 9.72 percent of the total value of capital imported from 39 countries in the review quarter.

During the period, foreign portfolio investment and other investment dropped by 9.76 percent and 24.07 percent respectively, while foreign direct investment paltry rose by 5.97 percent.

The statistics bureau in its report attributed the decline to the drop in both the foreign portfolio investment and other investment.

The two types of investment accounted for $4.22 billion, representing about 96 percent of the entire capital imported into the country in the second quarter of 2018.

Investment indicators in Nigeria have been unimpressive lately as foreign portfolio investors continued to divest their assets from the country ahead of the 2019 general elections and following the recent interest rate hike by the United States Federal Reserve Bank.

The persistent exit of the investors led the domestic market into a bear market – more than 21 percent drop from its recent peak – last week as the All-Share Index of the Nigeria Stock Exchange fell to 34,663.48 points, while the market capitalisation shed N219 billion to close at N12. 66 trillion on Monday before the Eid-El-Kabir Holiday.

Ripples Nigeria investigations also showed that the development had taken its toll on the nation’s external reserves, causing the country to lose over $1.43 billion in less than two months as the reserves settle at $46.373 billion as of Friday, August 17, 2018 since it peaked $47.799 billion on July 2, 2018.

 

The Guardian

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