News & Analysis: Financial markets

How Has COVID-19 Impacted the Nigerian Capital Markets? An Interview with NSE CEO Oscar N. Onyema

The CEO of The Nigerian Stock Exchange, Oscar N. Onyema, talks to COVID-19 Africa Watch about how the exchange has responded to the COVID-19 pandemic.

via COVID-19 Africa Watch

Fitch: Sub-Sahara African debt burdens rising faster than elsewhere

“Government debt burdens across sub-Saharan Africa are rising at a faster pace and to higher levels than elsewhere in emerging markets, heightening the risk of further rating downgrades and defaults, ratings agency Fitch warned.”

via Reuters

Half of Ugandan banks fail pandemic liquidity test

“More than half of Uganda’s commercial banks would have collapsed if the Central Bank had enforced a three-month customer loans repayments holiday at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the sector regulator has revealed. A stress test conducted on Uganda’s 25 banks showed most would not have survived the cash crunch since loan interest income accounts for 60 percent of their revenue.”

via The East African

Ecocash defies Zimbabwe order to suspend mobile money transactions

“Zimbabwe’s Ecocash has defied a government order to suspend transactions, after President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s administration accused mobile-money platforms of a conspiracy to sabotage the collapsing Zimbabwe dollar.”

via Financial Times

Interview with Betty Wilkinson: Financial Stress and Pathways for COVID-19 Resilience in Zambia

Betty Wilkinson, CEO, Financial Sector Deepening Zambia, speaks to COVID-19 Africa Watch about the economic impacts of the pandemic in Zambia and the way her group and others are responding.

via COVID-19 Africa Watch

Rand weakens amid surge in COVID-19 cases

“The rand was weaker on Friday morning, slipping along with its emerging-market peers, as a surge in new COVID-19 cases overshadowed sentiment about the reopening of economies.”

via Business Live

African venture funding is expected to slow but impact investors are boosting health and agri-tech startups

“Between 2014 and 2019, 44% of venture capital deals recorded in African tech ecosystems included participation from at least one impact investor, data from Africa Private Equity and Venture Capital Association show. With a slump in venture capital investment expected in African tech ecosystems this year, the role of impact investment firms and institutions will become vital.”

via Quartz Africa

Africa needs its own ‘repo’ market

“Many African countries face a vicious cycle: lack of market access due to rising spreads at a time when they need it most and consequently weaker investment and growth potential — in some cases the ugly spectre of downgrades, defaults and debt restructuring may follow. An SPV funded by a major central bank could help break this pernicious pattern and create a virtuous circle for countries with sustainable macroeconomic fundamentals.”

via Financial Times

Should the rising stock market amid the chaos raise suspicions?

“It remains doubtful that the SA Reserve Bank will start buying local corporate debt. The bank has indicated that it will be sticking to government bonds to help support liquidity in the primary market, and it already owns around R30-billion in state treasuries. There has been no indication by the monetary authority that it will expand its holdings any time soon.”

via Daily Maverick

Egypt v. Coronavirus: The pound faces a war of attrition, not a crisis

“The COVID-19 pandemic raised the risks for the Egyptian currency in several ways. Tourism, which was bringing in US$1b a month, has collapsed. Many foreign investors have sold their Egyptian T-bills. Revenue from the Suez Canal has slumped, with the Economist Intelligence Unit in London predicting a 22.6% decline in global trade volume in 2020.”

via The Africa Report