The Ugandan and Kenyan shillings and Zambia’s kwacha are expected to slip in the next week to Thursday, while Nigeria’s naira is forecast to be range-bound on the official market and Ghana’s cedi and Tanzania’s shilling broadly stable, traders said.
Kenya’s shilling is forecast to weaken because of increased demand for dollars from importers from all sectors.
Commercial banks quoted the shilling at 150.30/50 per U.S. dollar, compared with last Thursday’s closing rate of 149.90/150.10.
Earlier on Thursday, the shilling, which is down 17.9% so far this year, touched a new all-time low of 150.35/55 per dollar, according to LSEG data.
“We have seen a lot of demand, but it cuts across all sectors,” one trader said.
Nigeria’s naira is seen trading around its current levels on the official market in the coming week, after the finance minister said the government was expecting $10 billion of inflows to ease dollar shortages.
However the currency will likely fall on the black market, where it trades freely but on thin volumes, one trader said.
The naira recovered to 775 naira to the dollar on the official market on Thursday from a record low of 999 naira touched last week. But it hit a record low of 1,300 to the dollar on the black market on Thursday .
“Market participants realise that even if you take the (exchange) rates (down) there are no funds. I expect the market to trade around the 800 levels next week,” the trader said.
Uganda’s shilling is expected to fall on customary end-month demand for dollars from goods importers.
Commercial banks quoted the shilling at 3,760/3,770 to the dollar, compared with last Thursday’s closing rate of 3,750/3,760.
“We anticipate a bit of demand as importers seek dollars to pay for shipments of goods for the coming month,” said a forex trader.
He said the shilling might weaken to 3,800 to the dollar in the coming days.
Zambia’s kwacha is likely to continue trading on the back foot next week as dollar demand, largely from energy importers, continues to exceed supply.
On Thursday, commercial banks quoted the kwacha at 22.11 per dollar, compared with 21.79 a week earlier.
“The local currency is projected to follow a downward trajectory,” Access Bank said in a note.
Ghana’s cedi is expected to remain steady due to improved dollar supply on the interbank market and a fall in demand.
LSEG data showed the cedi trading at 11.81 to the dollar on Thursday, compared to 11.80 at last Thursday’s close.
“The cedi traded relatively stable against the dollar in the past week. … We expect a similar narrative in the coming week,” said Sedem Dornoo, a senior trader Absa Bank Ghana.
Tanzania’s shilling is expected to hold steady as dollar inflows from foreign direct investment, tourism and agricultural exports meet demand from importers.
Commercial banks quoted the shilling at 2,495/2,505 per dollar, the same as last Thursday’s close.