Bridging the Gap: Money Matters in Nigeria and Marriage

Feranmi Olaseinde

Hatched by Feranmi Olaseinde

Sep 11, 2023

3 min read


Bridging the Gap: Money Matters in Nigeria and Marriage

In recent news, analysts are expressing concerns over the growing gap between official and black market exchange rates in Nigeria. The Nigerian Autonomous Foreign Exchange Rate Fixing (NAFEX) and the Investors’ and Exporters’ (I&E) FX Window Spot Rates, which determine the value of the Nigerian currency, will now be calculated using actual FX market transaction data instead of quotes from traders. This shift in methodology aims to bring more transparency to the forex market and reduce discrepancies between official and black market rates.

While the financial landscape in Nigeria undergoes changes, it's important to acknowledge that money matters extend beyond the realm of national economies. In fact, financial conversations are crucial in personal relationships, particularly before marriage. A recent study reveals that there are five essential money conversations to have before tying the knot.

Debt management is a significant topic that couples should discuss. Two popular strategies for paying off debt are the snowball method and the avalanche method. The snowball method involves prioritizing debts from the smallest balance to the largest, aiming to gain motivation from quick wins. On the other hand, the avalanche method focuses on paying off debts with the highest interest rates first. By discussing these approaches, couples can align their debt repayment strategies and work together towards achieving financial freedom.

Income and spending habits are also important factors to consider. Surprisingly, the survey found that a significant number of partnered Americans have lied or withheld information about their income or spending from their partners. It is crucial for couples to be transparent about their current income and expenses to determine if there is enough money to meet their joint financial goals. By openly discussing finances, couples can make informed decisions about budgeting, saving, and investing.

Credit scores can significantly impact a couple's financial journey. Although marital status does not directly affect credit scores, the creditworthiness of each individual can influence joint financial decisions. For instance, when applying for a mortgage, both partners' credit scores are usually considered. Therefore, it is crucial to assess and improve credit scores collectively. This might involve paying down debt, setting up automatic payments, or disputing any errors on credit reports. By actively working on improving credit scores, couples can secure better interest rates and financial opportunities.

Now that we have explored the importance of financial conversations in both national and personal contexts, let's provide actionable advice for bridging the gap in both scenarios:

  • 1. Embrace transparency: Whether discussing exchange rates or personal finances, transparency is key. By openly sharing information and being honest about financial matters, trust can be built, and informed decisions can be made.
  • 2. Educate yourself: Stay informed about the latest developments in the financial landscape, both globally and personally. In the case of Nigeria, understanding the new methodology for calculating exchange rates can help individuals and businesses navigate the forex market more effectively. Similarly, couples should educate themselves about personal finance topics, such as debt management and credit scores, to make informed decisions about their shared financial future.
  • 3. Seek professional guidance: In complex financial matters, seeking professional advice can be incredibly beneficial. For individuals navigating the foreign exchange market, consulting with financial experts or utilizing the services of reputable forex brokers can provide valuable insights. Likewise, couples can benefit from seeking guidance from financial advisors or marriage counselors specializing in financial matters. These professionals can help couples develop strategies, set financial goals, and navigate potential challenges.

In conclusion, the gap between official and black market exchange rates in Nigeria highlights the importance of transparency and accuracy in financial systems. Similarly, in personal relationships, open and honest conversations about money are crucial for building trust, aligning financial goals, and securing a stable future together. By embracing transparency, educating oneself, and seeking professional guidance, individuals and couples can bridge gaps in financial matters and pave the way towards a prosperous future.

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