AFRICA-FX-Ghana’s cedi to firm, Kenyan and Nigerian currencies to weaken -January 18, 2024 at 10:48 am EST

ACCRA (Reuters) – Ghana’s currency is expected to strengthen against the dollar in the next week to Thursday, while the Nigerian naira and Kenyan shilling are seen weakening with Uganda’s shilling holding steady, traders said.


Ghana’s cedi is expected to strengthen in the week ahead due to an expected disbursement of $600 million from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), traders said.

LSEG data showed the cedi trading at 11.9500 to the dollar on Thursday, compared with 11.9000 at last Thursday’s close.

The IMF executive board is due to meet on Friday to consider the first review of Ghana’s $3 billion loan programme and approve its next payout.

“The cedi this week has been under a lot of pressure amid limited dollar supply. However, we’ve begun to see increased intervention from the central bank,” said Chris Nettey, head of trading at Stanbic Bank Ghana.

“We expect, with the possible IMF disbursement of the $600 million before month-end and continued support from the central bank, we should see the pressure ease in the coming week,” he said.


The Kenyan shilling is expected to remain weak in the coming week as traders cautioned it would take more than loans from the IMF to stabilise the local currency.

Commercial banks quoted the shilling at 161.00/162.00 per U.S. dollar on Thursday, compared with last Thursday’s close of 158.50/159.50.

Market players were cautious despite Kenya securing the IMF board’s approval for $941 million in loans on Wednesday, one trader at a commercial bank said.

With demand from oil importers outmatching dollar inflows, the shilling could hit the level of 164.00/165.00 next week, the trader said.

The shilling hit repeated lows last year and has already lost over 2.7% against the dollar this year, LSEG data showed. Earlier on Thursday it hit an all-time low of 161.25/162.25.


The Ugandan shilling is expected to trade in a stable range as dollar inflows from commodity exporters match low importer demand. Commercial banks quoted the shilling at 3,800/3,810, compared with last Thursday’s close of 3,795/3,805.

“We are seeing quite strong flows from coffee and other commodities while momentum on the demand side is very slow,” said a trader at a commercial bank.

He said the shilling would trade in the 3,780-3,820 range in the next one week.


Nigeria’s naira is likely to be on a back foot in the coming week as exporters who are the main dollar suppliers keep pushing the currency to weaker levels comparable with the parallel market rate, traders said.

The naira was quoted at 950 to the dollar on the official market on Thursday. This compares with around 1,350 naira on the parallel market.

Nigeria’s central bank said it had cleared the entire foreign exchange backlog for 14 banks after the country received a $2.3 billion Afreximbank loan in a bid to support the naira, but the currency continues to weaken.

“On balance, recent news should have shored up the naira,” said Kyle Chapman, FX markets analyst at London-based Ballinger & Co. “Yet its devaluation continues.”


The kwacha is likely to remain under pressure against the dollar next week as demand for hard currency continues to outweigh supply.

On Thursday, the local currency was quoted at 26.34 per dollar from 25.75 a week ago.

“The local unit is expected to post minor losses in the near term,” Access Bank said in a note.

(Reporting by Christian Akorlie, Bhargav Acharya, Elias Biryabarema, Chris Mfula and Chijioke Ohuocha; Compiled by Anait Miridzhanian; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta)

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