Ghana’s cedi is expected to gain marginally on positive market sentiment ahead of a five-year domestic bond to be issued this week, analysts said.
After weakening nearly four per cent in January on seasonal dollar demand from importers and speculative buyers, the cedi has held firm in recent weeks.
It was quoted at 3.89 to the greenback last Thursday, compared with 3.92 the previous week.
“Market sentiment about the cedi’s performance has been positive recently, erasing fears of a possible first quarter cedi depreciation,” analyst Joseph Biggles Amponsah of Dortis Research said.
The Nigerian naira is expected to weaken a little on the parallel market as some traders are seen taking advantage of a recent rally to mop up dollar liquidity.
The currency was quoted by traders on the parallel market at 350 to the dollar last Thursday, better than 365 to the dollar the week before.
The naira rate remains flat around the peg rate of 197.50 on the official interbank market. Central bank curbs were introduced late last year to defend a currency peg which has restricted access to dollars.
The currency of Africa’s biggest economy rallied last week to around 300 a dollar after President Muhammadu Buhari rejected the idea of devaluing the naira, despite mounting pressure from an economic crisis caused by a sharp fall in the price of oil, Nigeria’s dominant export.
Aminu Gwadabe, head of Nigeria’s association of bureau de change operators said “hoarding and speculative activities have returned to the market, pushing down the naira value again”.
Kenya’s shilling is expected to hold steady but could come under pressure due to end-month importer dollar demand, traders said.
Commercial banks quoted the shilling at 101.70/80 to the dollar last Thursday, compared with the previous Thursday’s close of 101.75/85.
“I don’t see much movement. Maybe a bit of (dollar) demand towards the end of the month,” a trader at one bank said.