Turmoil aftershocks reach Africa as central banks shift course


Central banks around Africa — poised to disclose their first response to the emerging-market turmoil of history month — could very well usher inside an end on the continent’s easing cycle.

There’s 7 days to travel ahead of the US Federal Reserve delivers what is its third interest-rate increase of the year. Currency weakness from the wider market sell-off preceding that move along with a pickup in inflation may persuade officials to freeze borrowing costs — and possibly attempt to share tightening.

Central bankers in Nigeria, Ghana and Kenya will keep key rates unchanged at their meetings in a month’s time. This Thursday, South African officials are located by some economists as available to a potential hike. Russia raised its key rate by 25 basis points, while Turkish regulators increased the rate by 625 basis points.

“We are slowly seeing the consequences newest emerging-market events during the almost all Africa,” Celeste Fauconnier, an analyst at FirstRand’s Johannesburg-based Rand Merchant Bank unit, said. “It’s safe to say the cutting trend for most of Africa is over. We’re unlikely to see a reaction such as that of Turkey and Russia, however the probabilities of further rate cuts are extremely slim.”

Here’s a round-up with the the continent’s central bankers are dealing with.

South Africa

South Africa’s rand has lost 11% resistant to the dollar because start August, pushing inflation expectations to the three-month high. The Reserve Bank will have to balance its purpose of anchoring price growth all-around 4.5% with all the needs of an economy that fell to a recession inside second quarter.

Source: Bloomberg


Tax measures announced in July amplify price pressure in Ghana that had been brought on by the cedi’s weakness. While inflation remains inside central bank’s target band, it offers grabbed on the low it reached in April.

The currency’s drop has big consequences for inflation and it’s really “not certain the span of time this can persist and in what way the cedi will finish 4 seasons,” said Courage Boti, an Accra-based economist at Databank Group. “The Bank of Ghana may wish to observe these trends properly” before shifting rates, he explained.


While Kenya’s Monetary Policy Committee reports there’s room for that more accommodative stance, price pressures due to the introduction of your tax on fuel additionally, the decision by lawmakers not to ever repeal a law capping commercial borrowing costs may temper this.

The central bank “is unlikely to transfer again in the short term considering the likelihood of an uptick in inflation,” said John Ashbourne, a London-based economist at Capital Economics.


Nigeria’s inflation rate rose the very first time in 19 months in August and pre-election spending put together with a record budget could exacerbate price pressures. Deputy Governor Joseph Nnanna said a few weeks ago the central bank is “in the mood” for tightening and can increase its main interest if inflation doesn’t slow.

Gross reserves are near a six-month low and might get into further pressure as a consequence of capital outflows, Feyisike Ilemore, an analyst at ARM Research, said by telephone. Three of ten MPC members voted for tighter policy in July.

“These members alongside others might move forcefully for your rate hike from a bid to rein in inflation,” she said.

? 2018 Bloomberg L.P