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Tuesday, 31 Mar 2020

Weak Sentiments persist on Equities Market amid Rising Cases of COVID-19 Crisis

Insights Africa

Economic Outlook

Economic Outlook

  • From July 2019 to February 2020, the Kenyan Treasury reported nearly 40 BN KES (3.6 BN USD) in net debt from domestic investors, an equivalent of 96.67% of the 391.45 BN KES (3.3 BN USD) full-year target.
  • The Kenyan government has ordered boda boda riders to wear face masks and limit the number of passengers to one per trip as the number of confirmed coronavirus infections in the country increased to 50. Noting that the new cases reported were local transmissions meaning that the disease was now spreading within the country.
  • Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) recorded a rare drop in tax collections in the first two months of 2020, reflecting the restrained business activity amid fears the coronavirus pandemic will negatively impact the economy hard.
  • The African Development Bank has raised an exceptional 3 BN USD in a three-year bond to help alleviate the economic and social impact that the COVID-19 pandemic will have on livelihoods and Africa's economies.
  • After President Uhuru Kenyatta orders to shut all the schools down avoiding the spread of the pandemic coronavirus, the education tech solution firm, Snapplify is offering 49,000 e-books and revision materials to Kenyans for free.
  • The cost of second-hand cars is likely to increase up to 400,000 KES (3,820 USD) per unit on reduced supply as fewer ships are reported at the Mombasa port and as the shilling weakens against the dollar as a result of the coronavirus global markets shocks.
  • The Central Bank of Uganda sold dollars in the interbank market offering support to the local currency which has been experiencing sharp depreciation due to the coronavirus-related disruptions. Moreover, the bank injected about 780 BN KES (200 MM USD) as it seeks to shield the shilling from depreciation.
  • In Tanzania, women have access to loans from Local Government Authorities (LGAs) due to the SNV Netherlands- based Development Organization’s program that provides education to women on such loans.
Political Events

Political Events

  • Sudanese Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok announced that he would visit Egypt and Ethiopia soon to resume negotiations over the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD). Hamdok made the announcement during a phone call with US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, during which he extended his condolences to Mnuchin over the rising cases of coronavirus in the US.
  • Ethiopian airlines, the continent’s largest airline, has announced it has suspended flights to over 80 destinations due to the impact of COVID-19 in an effort to stop the spread of the virus.
Stock Market

Stock Market

  • The Nigerian stock market (NSE) All-share index and market capitalization depreciated by 52% to close the week at 21,861.78 and 11.393 TR NGN (31.043 BN USD) respectively. Similarly, all other indices finished lower with the exception of NSE Banking, NSE Insurance which appreciated while NSE ASeM Index closed flat. The downturn was impacted by losses recorded in medium and large capitalized stocks, amongst which are; Nigerian Breweries, Stanbic IBTC Holdings, Guaranty Trust Bank, Zenith Bank and Unilever Nigeria.
  • East African stock markets have started feeling the impact of Coronavirus that has hit global economies after three countries in the region confirmed outbreak of the virus. According to Economists the coronavirus fears have sparked investor rush for government bonds away from the volatile stock markets.                         Note:  Weekly values are calculated on Friday of each week.
Companies Transactions

Companies Transactions

  • UBA Kenya, part of Lagos-based banking multinational UBA Group, has posted a 105 MM KES (1 MM USD) profit before tax in 2019 on the back of growth in interest and non-funded incomes as well as tight control over costs. The jump represents a 347% y-o-y growth.
  • Venture financier Equalife Capital is seeking to raise between 1 BN USD in a fund intended to lend to firms facing business cycle pressures and the coronavirus crisis within the East African region. The relief fund is open to investors to put in cash within the next two weeks.
  • E-commerce firm Jumia has enhanced its partnership with Postal Corporation of Kenya to offer a discount on delivery fees as shoppers increasingly order goods online to stay safe from the coronavirus pandemic. Customers will pay only 116 KES (1.11 USD), inclusive of Value Added Tax (VAT) to collect their Jumia orders from the 620 post office outlets outside Nairobi.
  • Tanzania Cigarette Company (TCC) has posted strong performance results in 2019, maintaining its gross and net profit margins at 56% and 16% respectively compared to 2018. According to Tanzania Securities Limited (TSL), the company recorded increases in revenue and in operating expenses, but the latter at a lower rate to signify improved cost efficiencies.
  • Standard Bank Namibia has become the first bank in the country to reduce or waive charges for its digital platforms in a bid to contain the spread of COVID-19. All transactional fees related to value-added services such as TV subscriptions, electricity and airtime purchases have been waived.
  • SAFCOIN, an exclusive African cryptocurrency, is now available in Nigeria and Uganda, allowing the unbanked to participate in the digital economy, helping small businesses to establish an e-commerce presence with no start-up costs, and empowering more Africans to access global work opportunities through Africa.
  • Nigerian billionaire Dr Mike Adenuga Jnr and owner of Telco giant, Globacom, donates 5 BN NGN (4.08 MM USD) for the fight against Coronavirus (COVID-19) through the Mike Adenuga Foundation.
  • The African Medallion Group (AMG) has announced a financial aid package to the South African and Zimbabwean governments amounted to 10 MM RWF (10,695 USD) and 5 MM ZWD (13,815 USD), respectively in order to assist the Governments in the ongoing fight against the Covid-19 virus.
  • Absa bank has donated around 15 MM RWF (16,042 USD) to assist efforts to combat the coronavirus pandemic. There will be an additional 7 MM RWF (7,486 USD) worth of food redirected from the cancelled Absa Cape Epic event to vulnerable communities.


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