WEEKAHEAD-Kenya’s shilling under pressure, naira seen firming – Reuters

NAIROBI Jan 5 (Reuters) – Kenya’s shilling is expected to weaken further next week on dollar demand from oil importers, while the Nigerian naira is likely to gain on increased forex supply. 

KENYA

The Kenyan shilling is expected to remain under pressure with the central bank likely to sell dollars to smooth out any volatility, traders said.

At 0841 GMT, commercial banks quoted the shilling at 103.55/75 to the dollar, compared with 102.40/60 at last Thursday’s close.

NIGERIA

Nigeria’s naira is seen strengthening in the near term as bureau de change operators expect dollar supplies from international money transfer agents to boost liquidity.

The local currency held steady at 490 to the dollar on the parallel market on Thursday, the same level as last week, while the naira was quoted at 305 to the dollar at the official interbank window.

“We continue to see the naira hovering between 400-480 as the central bank fine tunes its policy to streamline rates and also as we see an increased dollar supply,” said Aminu Gwadabe president of association of bureau de change operators.

UGANDA

The Ugandan shilling is seen weaker, pressured by commercial banks picking up dollars in anticipation of a surge in demand from importers.

At 1027 GMT commercial banks quoted the shilling at 3,625/3,635, from last Thursday’s close of 3,605/3,615.

Benon Okwenje, trader at Stanbic Bank Uganda said the local currency would experience a “slow and gradual” depreciation spurred by healthy demand from banks and importers.

TANZANIA

The Tanzanian shilling is expected to come under pressure in the coming days, weighed down by strong demand for greenbacks from the energy and manufacturing sectors.

Commercial banks quoted the shilling at 2,189/2,194 to the dollar on Thursday, weaker than 2,173/2,183 a week ago.

“The liquidity tightness on the shilling has started to ease, while inflows of dollars is subdued,” said Mohamed Laseko, a dealer at CRDB Bank.

ZAMBIA

The kwacha is likely to make marginal gains against the dollar next week as companies start preparing to pay taxes due on Jan. 14.

At 0911 GMT on Thursday, commercial banks quoted the currency of Africa’s No.2 copper producer at 9.9400 per dollar, down from a close of 9.8400 a week ago.

“The kwacha should slightly appreciate towards the end of next week as companies start converting dollars,” independent financial analyst Maambo Hamaundu said.

GHANA

Ghana’s cedi is seen steady next week amid expectations that the central bank will resume its fortnightly dollar sales to commercial banks, an analyst said.

The local unit declined 11 percent at the end of December compared to an 18 percent depreciation in the previous year. It was trading at 4.2800 at 1245 GMT on Thursday, slightly down from 4.2400 at the end of December.

“We expect the pair (USD/GHS) to remain at around 4.2750 levels next week as Bank of Ghana resumes its programmed forex support to the interbank market,” Joseph Biggles Amponsah of the Accra-based Dortis Research said. (Reporting by John Ndiso, Oludare Mayowa, Elias Biryabarema, Fumbuka Ng’wanakilala, Chris Mfula, Kwasi Kpodo; Compiled by Tanisha Heiberg; Editing by Joe Brock)