WEEKAHEAD-AFRICA-FX-IMF disbursal of funds could boost Ghana’s cedi

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A man trades U.S. dollars for Ghanaian cedis at a currency exchange office in Accra, Ghana, June 15, 2015. REUTERS/Francis Kokoroko

ACCRA, March 8 (Reuters) – The Ghanaian cedi is likely to strengthen in the week ahead on expectations the country is about to receive funds from the IMF under a lending arrangement, while the Nigerian naira is likely to be stable.

GHANA
Ghana’s cedi is expected to firm in the days ahead, boosted by IMF signals this week that the country could receive the next disbursement under its $918 million credit programme.

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The local currency, which has strengthened 1.8 percent since January, was trading at 4.4500 by mid-morning on Thursday, up from 4.4575 a week ago.

There is also anticipation of a three-year bond issue which could pull in offshore investors, boosting dollar supplies, said Raphael Adubila of Accra-based Northstar Home Finance.

NIGERIA
The Nigerian naira is likely to remain stable, supported by dollar flows from exporters and the central bank’s interventions in the currency market, traders said.

Traders said the economy was recovering after a recession, helping to support the country’s two-year old multiple exchange system, which has been criticised by the International Monetary Fund.

On the official market, the naira was quoted at around 305.80, supported by the central bank. It traded at 360 per dollar for investors.

KENYA
The Kenyan shilling is expected to trade in a tight range against the dollar in the coming week supported by offshore interest in government debt as market players eye fresh factors to determine price direction, traders said.

Commercial banks quoted the shilling at 101.20/30 per dollar, the same as last Thursday’s close.

“We need to watch out for fresh factors in the near term… the appetite for Kenyan paper is positive,” said a trader from a commercial bank.

TANZANIA
The Tanzanian shilling is expected to remain trading in a stable range against the dollar in the days ahead, helped by subdued demand for greenbacks from importers.

Commercial banks quoted the shilling at 2,255/2,260 to the dollar on Thursday, weaker than 2,253/2,258 a week ago.

“The shilling will likely remain stable next week or strengthen slightly against the dollar due to a slowdown in demand for the U.S. currency,” said a trader at Commercial Bank of Africa Tanzania.

Reporting by John Ndiso, Kwasi Kpodo, Chijioke Ohuocha and Fumbuka Ng’wanakilala Editing by Susan Fenton

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Godwin Okafor is a Financial Journalist, Internet Social Entrepreneur and Founder of Naija247news Media Limited. He has over 16 years experience in financial journalism. His experience cuts across traditional and digital media. He started his journalism career at Business Day, Nigeria and founded Naija247news Media in 2010. Godwin holds a Bachelors degree in Industrial Relations and Personnel Management from the Lagos State University, Ojo, Lagos. He is an alumni of Lagos Business School and a Fellow of the University of Pennsylvania (Wharton Seminar for Business Journalists). Over the years, he has won a number of journalism awards. Godwin is the chairman of Emmerich Resources Limited, the publisher of Naija247news.

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