How to invest in treasury bills (T-Bills) in Nigeria


What is a treasury bill?

A Treasury bill (or T-Bill) is a short-term government debt security, which yields no interest. Rather, it is issued at a discount on the redemption price.

Basically, the Federal Government issues treasury bills at discounted prices for maturity periods between 91 and 364 days. At the end the selected maturity period, the government buys the bills back at full price. For example, let’s say you buy a 182-day ₦200,000 treasury bill at a discounted rate of ₦180,000. The Federal Government of Nigeria writes an IOU for ₦200,000 and agrees to pay back in 182 days.  You don’t get any monthly interest payments,  rather you make your money back when the bond is purchased back from you at full price. In this case the T-Bill pays 11% interest rate (₦20,000/₦180,000 = 11%) over the 182-day period.

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You will not get any e-mail alerts of notifications until the end of your tenure, so don’t expect any – just be patient. You only get a debit notification when the money is taken out of your account, and a credit notification when the money is returned at the end of the tenure. If you want proof of your investment, it is best to request this from your bank once the money has left your account. You will need to ask them for a T-bill certificate after payment has been made.

Where can I purchase T-Bills?

T-Bills are sold via commercial banks and official agents such as merchant banks, and sales are open to individuals and corporate investors.

Is there a minimum purchase amount for T-Bills?

It depends on the bank. Some banks offer a minimum of ₦50,000, while some offer a minimum of ₦500,000.

How long can I invest for?

There are 3 tenures available: 91 days, 182 days or 364 days.

How can I buy T-Bills?

First, you will need to complete an application form issued by your bank or an approved discount house such as Kakawa Discount House Ltd. You will need to submit your application early, as most banks are required to submit applications received by the Wednesday before the dates announced by CBN – which you can get on the CBN website or in the dailies. Alternatively,  your bank might be able to provide you with notifications ahead of time.

When completing the application form, you will be requested for a discount rate – which is the percentage by which the face value of the bill is discounted by. Current rates in Nigeria are around the 12% – 14% mark. You can request for this rate to either be set by your bank, or specified by you (under the “stop rate” section of the application form). If you do however choose to specify a rate which is significantly higher than what the CBN is prepared to offer, your bid will fail.

Various banks will offer you various stop rates/discount rates, depending on how much you want to invest and how long you want to invest it for so it is a good idea to shop around and not go with the first offer you receive. Do your research and select a bank carefully as people have reported banks offering as low as a 2.4% discount rate. As at October 2015, unverified informal accounts suggest that Firstbank seems to have the best bid rate for a 91 day tenure at 9.5%.

How do I calculate the return on my investment on T-Bills?

It is very easy to calculate the returns on your investment, and how this is paid. If for example you purchase T-Bills worth ₦100,000 at a 10% discount rate, CBN only debits your account of ₦90,000. At the end of the maturity period, you are paid your face value sum of ₦100,000.

Can I sell my T-bills before it matures?

It is possible to sell your T-Bills before it maturity using the OTC market. Because this is governed by the forces of demand and supply, you might make a loss if you choose to sell them before their maturity date.

How secure are T-Bills?

As T-Bills are based full faith of the Federal Government of Nigeria, they are considered one of the most secure investments to make. They can also be used as collateral, and are accepted by all banks.

I'm an grammar-obsessed writer with a passion for finance, innovation, lifestyle design, tech, healthy eating and who knows what else. Nothing makes my day like a nice, chunky comment on one of my posts to sink my teeth into. So go on, make my day :-)


  • Is the interest of t bill paid monthly or yearly

    Eze frank November 2, 2015 5:29 pm
    • You don’t get interest as you would get with a bank. You just get the full value of the bill you purchased at a discounted price.

      mrpepe November 2, 2015 6:06 pm
  • How do I know the T bills are going on sale?

    Alec March 25, 2016 4:57 pm
  • How do they calculate returns on t.bills.. Is it monthly or yearly..e.g i buy t.bills of #100000 wit 10% interest.will the 10000 interest be paid everymonth or jst once in a year.thank u.reply quick pls

    Okorhi godswill March 30, 2016 11:51 am
    • There are fixed terms after which you will be paid – 91 days, 182 days and 364 days. You don’t get paid monthly, you get paid at the end of the term, depending on which term you pick.

      Ethan Okoli April 29, 2017 7:31 am
  • How do they calculate returns on t.bills.. Is it monthly or yearly..e.g i buy t.bills of #100000 wit 10% interest.will the 10000 interest be paid everymonth or jst once in a year.thank u.reply quick pls,pls teach me pls

    Okorhi godswill March 30, 2016 11:52 am
  • Someone explained Treasury Bill with this example, which ia different from your anaysis here sir, kindly throw more light sir.
    SHORT TERM T.BILLS FOR 91days @ 5.99%
    Invested 1milllion naira @ 91days for 5.99%
    Discounted payment = 940,100
    To get true yield= 1m-940,100/940,100 * 100
    = 59,900/940,100 * 100 ; = 6.37%
    True yield = 6.37%
    Your interest would be 1m * 6.37%
    = #63,716(per annum)
    To get 90days
    #63,716/365days (to get for 1day)
    = #174.65naira(per day)
    90days = 174.65 *90 = #15,893naira

    Tunde April 3, 2016 4:24 pm
  • Are there any terms and conditions attached to T.Bills e.g withholding tax etc? If there are, what exactly are they?

    Adesanya Adebiyi May 30, 2016 7:55 pm
    • Hi Adesanya,

      There is no tax on the returns as it is a government security. That would be like you lending the government money and they forcefully take more than you lent them.

      Ethan Okoli April 29, 2017 7:37 am
  • I must thank you for this great work your doing #kudos to you. Will like to share with you platforms where one can invest and get steady stream of income while their Capital is well preserved. will email more on it. My name is Kingsley a Financial Advisor as well.

    Nwadike Kingsley August 6, 2016 2:05 pm
  • Hope investing on treasury bills is not dangerous. Or eat if d federal government fails to pay back

    Ilesanmi September 4, 2016 5:51 pm
    • No, in most countries treasury bills are 100% safe. It’s best to invest the smallest amount you can to test and see how it works. All the best

      mrpepe September 5, 2016 11:49 am
  • If invest 100k what is my interest rates and at end of the month no interest attach to it that’s no business

    Oteta Godwin September 9, 2016 2:34 pm
    • It does appeal to some people.

      Ethan Okoli April 29, 2017 7:39 am
  • Inform me on any update please about the current news on Treasury bills.

    Pam David Dango September 19, 2016 5:44 am
  • OK

    Tony October 1, 2016 12:46 pm
  • in your write up sir, it seems the bank has the power to fix discount rates. before now I thought such power rest in Fgn through DMO… how do you explain this

    Ndolo onyedikachi October 7, 2016 6:08 pm
    • So banks can fix their rates if you are buying through them on the secondary market – which is like the secondhand market for T-bills.

      Ethan Okoli April 29, 2017 7:41 am
  • This is quite interesting. Must it be in my existing bank or I can visit any bank for Tbills only?

    Rose November 6, 2016 4:20 pm
  • Is there a limit to how much one can invest with in T-Bills?

    Adibuah January 3, 2017 1:59 pm
  • Good day Mr Pepe, thanks for this platform. I invested in T-bills sometimes in October last year via my bank (GTB). I want to find out, am I supposed to get any certificate, or receipt, apart from the debit notification on my account, to show my investment?

    Phranklyn January 6, 2017 10:11 pm
    • You don’t get anything, Franklyn. You just collect your agreed returns at the end of the term

      Ethan Okoli January 7, 2017 9:46 am
    • Hi Franklyn,

      It is best to ask your bank for a certificate after the money has been paid. This is what you can then use to prove your investment.

      Ethan Okoli April 29, 2017 7:43 am
  • hellow mr pepe.please sir,I like to invest in treasury bills via gtbank,please how what are the steps to be taken.

    david January 14, 2017 3:33 pm
  • Good day MrPepe, thanks for this good work but i want to know if no document or certificate is issued in T bills, how then can i use it as collateral for loan if there is nothing to show for the investment made with the Government?

    Ejeh Michael January 16, 2017 9:34 am
    • Hi Michael, This is a good question. You will need to ask your bank for a certificate or proof of the investment.

      Ethan Okoli April 29, 2017 7:44 am
  • Goodday MrPepe. Thanks for this article but i want to state that i doubt if treasury bill could be used as a collateral for loans. I did a 91days Tbill of 3.8million with Fidelity bank in Dec 2016 which will mature by march 2017. When i had an emmergency and needed a token of 150k, fidelity bank could not grant me the 1month loan despite my TBill maturing a month away. The reason being that i am not a salary earner but a business person. So i want to state that Tbills could not be used as a bank collateral from a personal experience. thanks

    JOE February 3, 2017 4:28 am
    • Thank you for taking your time to educate the readers about this, Joe.

      I do appreciate

      Ethan Okoli February 11, 2017 10:27 am
  • @ Ejeh Michael. once your Tbill is successful, you will get an email notification of your successful Tbill bid details. It is required of you to ask or request for the certificate/statement from your bank. It is the detailed statement of your successful Tbill that is called Tbill certificate. But i was denied a loan with it at fidelity bank because i was not a salary earner but a business man. So don’t expect to get a loan with Tbill certificate.

    JOE February 3, 2017 4:39 am
  • Please I want to know. If I’m to apply for treasury bill, how should I fix the rate. Should I depend on my bank to do that for me or should I fix the rate based on the previous rates. Again. It is possible to apply for treasury bill of 91 days with the same bank for four times a year. I need immediate response.

    Tony March 5, 2017 1:25 am
  • Please Mr pepe is there any restrictions or range on the amount someone can invest in a treasury bill. Can someone apply for treasury bill above 10million. Please I need a quick response. Thank you

    Tony March 5, 2017 10:16 am
  • Thanks!

    Lola March 19, 2017 1:54 pm
  • thanks for the good work. I will like to invest on t-bill.I to understand it more before I take the decision.

    Romanus Agabi April 7, 2017 3:18 pm
    • Hi Romanus, I think the post is straightforward. Please feel free to ask any questions you have and i’ll try my best to answer.

      Ethan Okoli April 14, 2017 3:02 pm
  • Please Mr. Pepe I want to know the rate of interest/commission that a bank is entitled to for t-bill with a duration of 364 days. Thanks

    Blessing Anyanwu April 13, 2017 6:41 pm
  • Thanks

    Blessing Anyanwu April 18, 2017 8:38 am
  • I love tb. It is the best investment for now

    Ddjames April 26, 2017 9:52 pm
  • What is the minimum amount someone can invest?

    Gbenga May 28, 2017 7:52 pm
  • Hello Gbenga. You would have to find that out from your bank. Speak with your account manager.

    Tobenna Emechebe June 9, 2017 6:29 am
  • Thanks for the update. Pls I want to ask, how can one reinvest after the maturity period? Say I invest 100,000 in tbills for 91days, but don’t want my capita return.

    Leo June 11, 2017 6:18 pm
  • hello Leo, you can re-invest after maturity..i work with chapel Hill denham, an investment mgt can reach me on

    Stanley June 13, 2017 3:53 pm
  • Hi Ethan, I invest in TBills but fill out a form all the time. Do you know if any bank or if the CBN has an online platform for TB investments. This will make the process more efficient.

    Tayo June 14, 2017 1:33 am
  • I need more enlightment on tb please

    adams July 27, 2017 4:01 am
    • Hi Adams, have you got any specific questions not addressed in the post?

      Ethan July 27, 2017 6:54 pm
  • Please are treasury bill interest paid at time of purchase or at the maturity of the bill. Is there an option of interest payment at maturity of the bill?

    Ikonna August 3, 2017 3:07 pm
  • Please when is the next sales coming up

    Gift August 3, 2017 6:53 pm
  • Mr Pepe, awesomely amazing job you doing here. God bless you real good

    Inno August 26, 2017 9:16 am
    • Thanks and God bless

      Ethan August 28, 2017 8:03 pm
  • Please in the form I filled in the bank, there is an option for invest interest which I did, I want to know how much I will get in return, I invested 170,000 naria for 91days at the rate of 13.2%. How do I calcalute the interest?

    Ujunwa August 31, 2017 11:57 am
  • Good job

    Suleiman Bunyamin Aminu September 5, 2017 7:38 am
  • This is indeed an eye opener am banking with GT bank please can any one tell me the interest rate for 100000 for 90day I would love to invest. Thanks

    Doris September 6, 2017 6:21 am
  • Urgent

    Doris September 6, 2017 6:25 am
  • Please Mr pepe, what’s the Tbill rate of Zenith Bank a week ago?

    RAZA October 3, 2017 9:32 pm
  • plx how do I get to know the time and period to purchase treasury bill and also the current interest rates

    Stanley November 20, 2017 2:23 am
  • is witholding tax payed in T-Bill

    Adekunle Adebola November 30, 2017 10:44 am
  • this is quite an interesting forum …well done to all

    Rabiu December 3, 2017 4:16 pm
  • Thanks for the good work. Please I will like to know if fore instance CBN fails to pay you on the due day after your tenor; what or can someone takes legal actions against such laxity?

    George December 4, 2017 8:31 pm
  • Thanks for the good work. Please I will like to know if fore instance CBN fails to pay you on the due day after your tenor; what or can someone takes legal actions against such laxity? Thank you

    George December 4, 2017 8:33 pm
  • Hello pls when are we expecting this month’s rate to be announced.? And what’s the interest amount of 1m going to be @13%, howmuch will i get on the 1m for the 13% at 90days window..?

    Damian December 5, 2017 5:54 am
  • What is the difference between bonds and treasury bills?

    Eniola December 5, 2017 11:06 am
  • This is really interesting but Mr pepe isn’t any longer here for the needed responses. Pls come back, I know that some of the questions are repeated and boring but there are still a few twists which need straightening, pls don’t kill the excitement,nigerians need to raise money, hook or crook. Thanks a plenty for this forum.

    Ekpez December 8, 2017 11:07 am
  • Hello, pls I need advice on which bank currently offers the best %age for T bills now. How much can I get for an investment of 6M for a 6month window considering what rate is available? Hope pepe is still here to handle issues as I see that no entries has been made here since Dec 8th?

    Ekpez December 16, 2017 2:47 am
  • Well, i like this.
    Thank you

    Sophie B February 2, 2018 11:39 pm
  • Good work you’ve done here, keep it going!

    Jide Egbeyemi February 27, 2018 9:13 am
    • Thanks for the heads up, Jide!

      Ethan February 27, 2018 10:04 pm
  • hello,if i wanted to ivest 10 million i T bills at a rate of 10% FOR 90 sdays,how much should i expect back in total plus my capital .Thanks

    diran emanuel March 1, 2018 4:04 pm
  • Pls I will like to know the difference between treasury bill and treasury certificate.

    Victoria oluwasesan March 3, 2018 12:47 pm
  • please which bank offers the highest interest and how do I invest on TB also what’s the minimum amount for investing

    chukwudi March 6, 2018 3:29 pm
    • Hi Chukwudi,

      I’m afraid you will need to call the banks individually to check their rates. I would recommend calling on a Sunday, as you won’t wait long in the queue.

      Ethan March 8, 2018 5:26 pm
  • Great job.
    Pls more advice, i want to invest 100,000 in this platform. What will be my gain after 90 days.

    Joseph ifeanyi March 15, 2018 11:34 pm
  • All Nigerian investment has a twist! From posts above, If one invests 1m for 91 days @10% and make 25k and another 10m to make 250k after all charges, then the TB business is a waste! The actual ROI is not 100k nor 1,000,000 but 25k and 250k respectively after all charge deductions (a paultey 25%) while a whooping 75% is lost to bank charges!

    Duru Nicodemus April 29, 2018 4:57 pm
  • I feel elated being here. Thanks to Sir Ethan.

    Ani J.O. June 6, 2018 11:00 pm
  • What is the reliable bank where one can have treasury bill with

    Dorcas July 4, 2018 11:33 am
  • Hi, I invested in a treasury bill. It lists the Face Value as N250,000.00 at a Discount Value of N231,806.85 and a rate of 11.4% maturing in six months. I’ve done every calculation imaginable but I still don’t get the 11.4%. Please, what am I missing?

    Annonymous July 8, 2018 5:40 pm
  • Hello Mr Peppe,

    How do I buy treasury bill from primary market instead of secondary market from the bank?

    Also, are there particular amount threshold required to buy from primary market as an individual, please help me on this, thank you

    Dan December 31, 2018 9:52 am
  • Nice job, please what will be my advantage if I should leave my money for 91 days, 182 days and 365 days respectively? The percentages rates and Interest. Thank you.

    Max January 31, 2019 4:13 pm
  • Hi, how can I lend money with my T-bills certificate?

    Tochi April 17, 2019 1:54 pm
  • HI am Amaka, please can one invest in the bill every month? for those who do not earn much as there salary as *200k? what if you want to invest like 50k every month at a certain rate. is it allowed?

    Chiamaka Maxwell June 21, 2019 10:01 am
  • What will one do if treasury bills mature and the money is not paid?

    David July 15, 2019 11:45 pm
  • How much will be paid to me on 10percent for 1year 200,000 tbill

    edevbankhiota July 20, 2019 2:51 pm
  • If i invests 1m for 91 days @10% I’m I going to have 100,000 at the end of the 91days b/c somebody said that the interest will be divided by the 3 months. pls shed more light on this. Thanks

    samson July 20, 2019 5:03 pm
  • If one invests 100k at an interest rate of 8.25%, how much would he make at maturity

    Son of God August 4, 2019 2:02 pm
  • plz my questions are outside this box pardon me plz do you know about pure yield investment a friend told me their interest is 10% per weekly. that’s to say 50k gives you 5k every 10days

    joy August 10, 2019 10:48 pm
  • If I invest 100k like for 6 months base on the T-Bill terms what will be my ROI?
    Pls reply me sir

    Sopuruchi P August 16, 2019 8:27 pm
  • I thank you for this platform, It is a good things to be inform about what is going on in some one environment, keep the good work on.

    ODE J. September 17, 2019 5:56 pm
  • Pls if i invest 100000 how much is my interest

    Praise idiake September 23, 2019 2:55 pm
  • Please if I invest #100000 for 91days what is the exact amount I will get as return.

    Ajayi Michael October 16, 2019 2:26 pm
  • I will like a private discussion with you pls.
    I live in Manchester and my mobile is +447960880278
    I have specific questions to ask and I can pay if it requires me to pay so long as i get the information I need.

    Many thanks

    Nwosu October 18, 2019 7:22 pm
  • Please I want to invest 1m in TBills. Can you advise me. Thank you.

    Comfort Dauda Iliya October 20, 2019 5:31 pm

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