Author Archives: rafiqraji

About rafiqraji

Dr. Rafiq Raji is managing director & chief economist at Macroafricaintel Investment LLC, an Africa-focused macro research & investment consultancy based in Lagos, Nigeria. He is also an adjunct researcher at the NTU-SBF Centre for African Studies at Nanyang Business School, Singapore. Dr Raji is an avid writer, with his writings severally featured in prestigious publications like BusinessDay, Africa Investor, The Africa Report, African Business, New African and HowWeMadeItInAfrica. He was previously an Africa Economist at Standard Chartered Bank in London. Before joining the Global Research team at Standard Chartered, Dr. Raji worked with various teams at its Nigerian franchise; gaining experience in credit risk, asset & liability management, and capital markets. Rafiq was also previously Head, Advisory & Capital Markets for the securities brokerage arm of Nigeria's Standard Alliance Group. Prior to that, he had investment banking stints with FBN Capital Limited, Vetiva Capital Management Limited and Africapital Management Limited; all in Lagos, Nigeria. Dr. Raji holds an MBA from the Lagos Business School, Nigeria and a PhD in Financial Economics from Wits Business School at the University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa. His personal interests are travel, music, writing, finance & economics, international politics & relations, comparative religious studies, volunteering/philanthropy, film & photography and everything and anything about Africa! He hopes to learn how to play the guitar and speak, read and write Arabic, French and Mandarin. He is also an assiduous and lifetime student of history.

macroafricaintel Daily Brief | 26 Nov

By Rafiq Raji, PhD
Twitter: @DrRafiqRaji, @macroafrica

Global Markets
• Asian shares advance as vaccine, recovery hopes triumph soft US data
• Hit by pandemic, Americans line up for Thanksgiving meals
• Bitcoin price drops more than $1,000 in Asian trade
• Oil rally boosted by surprise fall in US stocks
• Brent up 0.9% at $49.06, WTI up 0.7% at $46.05 (0245GMT)
• Gold gains as weak US jobs data, virus worries dim recovery hopes
• Spot gold up 0.3% at $1,811.31/oz., futures up 0.2% at $1,808.70 (0324GMT)

Key African events or data releases today
[Posts & comments at my Twitter handles @DrRafiqRaji, @macroafrica]
• AU envoys in Ethiopia to mediate Tigray conflict, as military assault on region about to begin
• Central Bank of Kenya decides interest rates [fcst. 7.0%, prev. 7.0%]
• South Africa producer inflation Oct-20 [fcst. 2.5% yy, prev. 2.5%]
• Ghana ruling NPP’s Akufo-Addo & NDC’s Mahama on the campaign trail
• South Africa state capture inquiry continues
• Covid-19 updates by authorities across the continent

Key African events or data releases yesterday & early a.m today
Reuters
• Exxon & Total in talks over Mozambique LNG resource-sharing deal – sources
• Ethiopia news agency says 10,000 people ‘destroyed’ in war
• Suspected militant attack kills four Chad soldiers
• Africa envoys head for Ethiopia as ultimatum expires for assault
• South Africa business confidence improves in fourth quarter as
lockdowns ease – survey
• Malawi ready to produce cannabis for industrial and medicinal use
• South Africa confirms going for COVAX vaccine scheme for 10% of population
• Tigrayans accused of massacre in Ethiopia war, both sides claim advances

Bloomberg
• South Africa hospitals warn of virus surge in holiday season
• The cost of shorting South Africa’s rand is higher than ever
• World’s outlier Nigeria on remittances has its currency woes to blame
• Top cocoa grower Ivory Coast says chocolatiers favor profit over farmers
• South Africa’s Mboweni says PIC willing to help Eskom resolve debt
• Burundi urges UN to push Rwanda for handover of dissidents
• Alleged member of Nigeria cybercrime ring arrested in Lagos
• Africa looks to China, Russia to boost scant vaccine supplies
• South Africa holds five days of mourning for coronavirus victims
• Pandemic created new class of Kenya poor, World Bank says
• UN fears for potential of civilian casaulties in Ethiopia
• Moody’s says Nigeria banks are more equipped for expansion push
• Coronavirus is helping Africa economies compete
• Senegal cautions against private-debt relief for Africa nations
• South Africa business mood jumps to highest in more than two years
• Kenya seeks to refinance foreign commercial debt at 5% ceiling
• South Africa stocks edge higher as upgrades boost Bidvest, Tiger
• South Africa inflation quickens to 7-mth high on food costs
• Israel should invest in its new ties to Sudan
• Ethiopia fighting leaves Sudan hosting refugees it can’t support
• South Africa could sells shares in restructured national airline

N.B. Full stories of above headlines are available on Reuters & Bloomberg

macroafricaintel Daily Brief | 25 Nov

By Rafiq Raji, PhD
Twitter: @DrRafiqRaji, @macroafrica

Global Markets
• Rejecting Trump’s foreign policy approach, Biden says ‘America is back’
• Global stocks hit record high as Biden, vaccine lift global prospects
• Oil prices rally further on vaccine optimism despite inventory rise
• Brent up 1.1% at $48.40, WTI up 1.1% at $45.38 (0247GMT)
• Gold inches higher from over 4-mth low as dollar weakens
• Spot gold up 0.1% at $1,809.41/oz., futures up 0.2% at $1,807.60 (0124GMT)

Key African events or data releases today
[Posts & comments at my Twitter handles @DrRafiqRaji, @macroafrica]
• Kenya’s Uhuru & Raila start BBI signatures collection campaign
• South Africa consumer inflation Oct-20 [fcst. 3.2% yy, prev. 3.0%]
• South Africa business confidence Q4-20 [prev. 24]
• Electoral Commission of Ghana chair Mensa briefs press on election preparations
• Ghana ruling NPP’s Akufo-Addo & NDC’s Mahama on the campaign trail
• South Africa state capture inquiry continues
• South Africa producer inflation Oct-20 (26 Nov) [fcst. 2.5% yy, prev. 2.5%]
• Central Bank of Kenya decides interest rates (26 Nov) [fcst. 7.0%, prev. 7.0%]
• Covid-19 updates by authorities across the continent

Key African events or data releases yesterday & early a.m today
Reuters
• EU says Ethiopia fighting destabilising region, urges ceasefire
• Ethiopia sent home soldiers of Tigray ethnicity from UN force in
South Sudan: sources
• Niger ex-president Tandja, toppled after extending rule, dies at 82
• UN chief urges Ethiopia’s leaders to protect civilians in Tigray region
• South Africa confirms going for COVAX vaccine scheme for 10% of population
• Nigeria central bank holds benchmark lending rate at 11.5%
• Ethiopia commission says Tigray youth group killed 600 civilians in
November 9 attack
• Tigrayans accused of massacre in Ethiopia war, both sides claim advances
• Higher public debt threatens South Africa’s financial system, c.bank says
• UN alarmed at military build-up around Tigray capital
• Nigeria court jails seven for oil theft
• Mozambique, Tanzania to launch joint operations against insurgents
• Nigeria to bar those who flout covid-19 test rules from flying
• Head of Egypt rights group held in solitary confinement – lawyers
• Congo warlord sentenced to life for war crimes

Bloomberg
• Ethiopia fighting leaves Sudan hosting refugees it can’t support
• South Africa could sell shares in restructured national airline
• Nigeria starts era of micro oil refineries with tiny new plant
• South Africa to be in frontline for covid-19 vaccine, Mboweni says
• Angola plans to sell stakes in state companies to raise funds
• South Africa paid covax 500 mln rand for vaccine access
• Nigeria parallel market can’t dictate naira rate, Emefiele says
• Ivory Coast politics no deterrent for yield-chasing investors
• South Africa’s Mboweni says PIC willing to help Eskom resolve debt
• Ethiopia agency blames Tigray youth for massacre of 600 people
• Long-isolated Ethiopia to take major step to open phone market
• Nigeria central bank holds key rate, expects a short recession
• OPEC production cuts limit scope of Nigeria’s recovery
• South Africa to lift dividend guidance once out of virus crisis
• Zimbabwe gold smugglers estimated to ship $1.5 bln a year
• South Africa’s SAA needs partner to strengthen management, administrator says
• Nigeria court jails Ukrainians, Pakistanis for stealing crude
• A ‘missing’ president is sparking déjà vu in rudderless Algeria
• South Africa rising debt is ‘major’ threat to finance industry
• The world needs to head off the worst in Ethiopia
• South Africa treasury says SAA bailout still intact
• South Africa’s ANC looks to employment fund to rescue Eskom
• Rwanda finance minister warns of moderate risk of debt default

N.B. Full stories of above headlines are available on Reuters & Bloomberg

macroafricaintel Daily Brief | 24 Nov

By Rafiq Raji, PhD
Twitter: @DrRafiqRaji, @macroafrica

Global Markets
• Trump administration gives green light for Biden transition
• Biden to name Yellen to Treasury to lead US from sharp economic
downturn [Awesome!]
• New Trump rule may require some African tourists to pay up to $15,000 in bonds
• BOJ’s Kuroda rebuffs view Japan heading towards deflation
• Brent hits highest since March, spurred by coronavirus vaccine hopes
• Brent up 0.9% at $46.49, WTI up 1.1% at $43.51 (0522GMT)
• Gold dips as vaccine hopes, strong US data signal recovery
• Spot gold down 0.1% at $1,834.40/oz., futures down 0.3% at $1,833 (0105GMT)

Key African events or data releases today
[Posts & comments at my Twitter handles @DrRafiqRaji, @macroafrica]
• Central Bank of Nigeria decides interest rates [fcst. 11.5%, prev. 11.5%]
• 26th NESG Nigeria economic summit (23-24 Nov)
• Electoral Commission of Ghana chair Mensa briefs press on election preparations
• Ghana ruling NPP’s Akufo-Addo & NDC’s Mahama on the campaign trail
• South Africa state capture inquiry continues
• Kenya’s Uhuru & Raila start BBI signatures collection campaign (25 Nov)
• South Africa consumer inflation Oct-20 (25 Nov) [fcst. 3.2% yy, prev. 3.0%]
• South Africa producer inflation Oct-20 (26 Nov) [fcst. 2.5% yy, prev. 2.5%]
• Central Bank of Kenya decides interest rates (26 Nov) [fcst. 7.0%, prev. 7.0%]
• Covid-19 updates by authorities across the continent

Key African events or data releases yesterday & early a.m today
Reuters
• Armed group deploys at Libya’s NOC headquarters
• Burkina Faso’s Kabore ahead in early presidential election results
• Ethiopia says Tigray capital encircled after surrender ultimatum
• Ethiopia’s Tigray forces’ leader denies regional capital encircled
• Ethiopia arrests nearly 800 suspects over ‘terrorist’ plot – TV
• South Africa corruption inquiry to file criminal complaint against Zuma
• Kenya seeks $2.3 bln loan from the IMF, treasury says
• Ethiopia says Axum airport smashed, Tigrayans face surrender deadline
• South Africa’s Naspers banks on e-commerce boom post pandemic for growth
• FIFA bans Africa football head for five years after ethics investigation
• UN urges civilian protection after Ethiopia’s 72-hr deadline for
Tigrayan capital
• Liberia electoral body says referendum on presidential terms will take place

Bloomberg
• South Africa labour minister warns of fund collapse over virus benefits
• South Africa’s refinery woes raise reliance on fuel imports
• Nigeria govt plans to only buy locally assembled cars
• South Africa banks to see limited fallout from debt downgrades
• Ghana central bank says options waning as debt hits 4-yr high
• Libya state oil firm withholds funds in feud with central bank
• Nigeria’s top bank wants to double clients with Africa expansion
• Ivory Coast tests euro debt market in first foray since pandemic
• Ghana holds key interest rate a fourth time as economy picks up
• Billionaire Bezos backs start-up in maiden Africa investment
• South Africa finance minister questions own airline bailout
• Zuma to face charges for snubbing South Africa graft probe
• South Africa’s ability to tame wage bill uncertain, Fitch says
• South Africa’s ANC looks to unemployment fund to rescue Eskom

N.B. Full stories of above headlines are available on Reuters & Bloomberg

macroafricaintel Daily Brief | 23 Nov

By Rafiq Raji, PhD
Twitter: @DrRafiqRaji, @macroafrica

Global Markets
• Asian shares rise as vaccine hopes inject relief
• In latest China jab, US drafts list of 89 firms with military ties
• Oil prices extend gains on covid vaccine hopes, OPEC+
• Brent up 0.5% at $45.17, WTI up 0.2% at $42.52 (0436GMT)
• Gold rises as softer dollar, stimulus hopes outweigh vaccine optimism
• Spot gold up 0.2% at $1,873.51/oz., futures little changed at $1,871.70

Key African events or data releases today
[Posts & comments at my Twitter handles @DrRafiqRaji, @macroafrica]
• Bank of Ghana announces rate decision [fcst. 14.5%, prev. 14.5%]
• Central Bank of Nigeria decides interest rates (23-24 Nov) [fcst. 11.5%, prev. 11.5%]
• Finance minister Ahmed opens 26th NESG Nigeria economic summit (23-24 Nov)
• Electoral Commission of Ghana chair Mensa briefs press on election preparations
• Ghana ruling NPP’s Akufo-Addo & NDC’s Mahama back on the campaign trail
• South Africa state capture inquiry continues
• South Africa ruling ANC top executives meet [during the week] to discuss embattled scribe Magashule’s fate
• South Africa consumer inflation Oct-20 (25 Nov) [fcst. 3.2% yy, prev. 3.0%]
• South Africa producer inflation Oct-20 (26 Nov) [fcst. 2.5% yy, prev. 2.5%]
• Central Bank of Kenya decides interest rates (26 Nov) [fcst. 7.0%, prev. 7.0%]
• Covid-19 updates by authorities across the continent

Key African events or data releases over the weekend & early a.m today
Reuters
• UN urges civilian protection after Ethiopia’s 72-hr deadline for Tigray forces
• Spain to send more police to Senegal to curb illegal migration, says
foreign minister
• Nigeria general dismisses bloody protest videos as fake
• Ethiopia PM gives Tigray forces 72 hours to surrender regional capital
• Burkina Faso holds election under looming threat of violence
• Ethiopia govt says its forces have taken town around 100 km from
Tigray capital
• Militant group in North Africa names new leader to succeed Droukdel
• Search for last miner trapped at South Africa’s Gamsberg goes on,
mining halted
• Sudan cuts petrol and diesel prices for consumers – minister
• South Africa’s ‘painful’ ratings downgrade will raise borrowing
costs – minister
• Uganda’s Bobi Wine released on bail as protest death toll rises to 37
• Nigeria slips into recession, weighed down by covid-19 and oil prices
• Covid-19 exposed Kenya’s debt vulnerability though measures helped – IMF
• Ethiopia rejects African mediation, pushes toward rebel-held Tigray capital
• In Burkina Faso, voters left voiceless amid escalating violence
• Egypt arrests executive director of prominent rights group in latest crackdown
• UN says it plans for 200,000 Ethiopia refugees in Sudan
• Zimbabwe issues six new TV licences, including to defence ministry
• Zimbabwe court frees journalist charged with obstructing justice
• As covid toll among Kenya doctors jumps, one widow shares her grief
• South Africa insurer Santam to appeal coronavirus ruling
• Mozambique police say northern village, site of reported beheadings,
retaken from insurgents
• UN aid agencies call for ceasefire in Ethiopia, seek $200 mln aid
• Sierra Leone considering a warrant for the arrest of former president
• Death toll rises to 28 in Uganda protests after Bobi Wine’s arrest: police
• Jordan to open consulate in Western Sahara amid dispute
• UN Libya envoy urges UN to blacklist anyone who obstructs peace talks

Bloomberg
• Africa’s biggest fund manager is seeking new business
• Kenya seeks $2.3 bln loan from IMF to help economic recovery
• UAE calls on Ethiopia parties to end fighting, resume dialogue
• South Africa’s President Ramaphosa says the country can avoid a debt crisis
• G20: World leders praise Paris climate pact as Trump justifies exit
• G20: Trump stays mum on vaccine sharing despite pledges from others
• Tanzania, Mozambique launch joint operations against insurgents
• Ethiopia conflict sparks conflicting narratives as battle rages
• Emergin markets look to 2021 as Goldman adds to bullishe calls
• Militant group names new North Africa leader, report kidnap death
• South Africa study puts covid deaths much higher than official toll
• Militant violence casts shadow over Burkina Faso elections
• Ethiopia’s telecom auction plan falters before bidder meeting
• Madagascar expects economic turnaround in 2021 with 4.5% growth
• Disaffected Angolans prepare for fresh protest over the economy
• AU to send envoys to mediate Ethiopia conflict
• South Africa descends deeper into junk after two downgrades
• South Africa ruling party to discuss fate of Ramaphosa’s rival
• Nigeria economy falls into recession with 3.62% contraction
• Nigeria backtracks on currency rules after naira weakens
• Macron says Russia, Turkey fueling anti-France sentiment in Africa
• Clashes erupt after racism protest at South Africa school
• Cocoa extends rally to 8-mth high on Hershey trade
• Ghana’s 2nd – biggest bank sees stronger loans growth in 2021
• Ethiopia faces risk of protracted war with dissident state
• Uganda court grants bail to presidential candidate amid protests
• Tiger Brands to cut 400 jobs as new CEO strives to reduce costs

N.B. Full stories of above headlines are available on Reuters & Bloomberg

macroafricaintel Daily Brief | 20 Nov

By Rafiq Raji, PhD
Twitter: @DrRafiqRaji, @macroafrica

Global Markets
• Biden says he has picked a Treasury secretary who will please all Democrats [Yellen, perhaps?]
• Japan aims to expand CPTPP trade pact as UK, China eye membership
• Stocks wobble after Mnuchin pulls plug on Fed stimulus
• Oil prices little changed, on track for third straight weekly gain
• Brent up 0.1% at $44.25, WTI unchanged at $41.90 (0505GMT)
• Gold dips as Mnuchin recalls pandemic-related funds
• Spot gold down 0.2% at $1,864.54/oz., futures up 0.1% at $1,863.80 (0359GMT)

Key African events or data releases today
[Posts & comments at my Twitter handles @DrRafiqRaji, @macroafrica]
• AfCFTA council of ministers meet
• S&P reviews South Africa credit rating [negative outlook from stable expected]
• South Africa’s Ramaphosa participates in G20 virtual summit (21-22 Nov)
• Bank of Ghana MPC meets (18-23 Nov) [fcst. 14.5%, prev. 14.5%]
• Covid-19 updates by authorities across the continent

Key African events or data releases yesterday & early a.m today
Reuters
• Ethiopia’s Tigray rebels fire rockets into city, region govt says
• Sierra Leone considering a warrant for the arrest of former president
• WHO’s Tedros denies taking sides in Ethiopia conflict
• Ethiopia rebel forces say air strike has injured many university
students in Tigray
• Rebel leader says capital of Ethiopia’s Tigray region bombed
• As new debt crisis looms, Africa needs more than world is offering
• Nigeria should sanction CNN for report on shooting of protesters – minister
• Troops move to quell protests over Bobi Wine, 16 killed
• Ethiopia moves on Tigray capital, castigates WHO boss Tedros
• Judge rejects Zuma request to step down in South Africa graft inquiry
• Stop Ethiopia war and help civilians, Biden team urges
• Zambia seeks ‘win-win’ deal with bondholders after default, says minister
• As covid toll among Kenya doctors jumps, one widow shares her grief
• Three South Africa players isolated after one tests covid-19 positive
• South Africa retailer Pick n Pay launches mobile phone service
• A group of villagers, a migrant boat and a deadly end in Senegal
• South Africa investment conference attracts $7 bln in new pledges
• De Beers diamond sales rise as demand recovers from covid-19 hit
• Three dead and 34 injured in protests against arrest of Uganda’s Bobi Wine
• UN says more than 14,500 have fled Ethiopia to Sudan
• Ethiopia govt says rebels have committed ‘atrocities’ during 2-wk
Tigray conflict
• Outside Somalia’s Mogadishu, locusts turn farmland into desert

Bloomberg
• South Africa may edge to deeper junk rating if S&P cuts outlook
• Hershey is behind the big cocoa trade that upended N.Y. markets
• Ghana blasts ethical cocoa programs and firms refusing to pay up
• Nigeria denies CNN report saying army killed protesters
• Ethiopia army is closing in on Tigray capital, minister says
• South Africa central bank holds rate and signals next move is up
• First vaccine to be made in South Africa since mid-1990s
• Ethiopia army accuses WHO chief of backing dissident region
• Africa has only 20% of financing for energy-deficient nations
• Top South Africa banks split on dividends after Investec payout
• Libya says Total mulls more investment in nation’s oil fields
• Tanzania places China Commercial Bank under administration
• Zuma fails to win recusal of South Africa judge probing graft
• Mozambique open to support in fighting militants, Lusa says
• South Africa can avoid debt crisis, President Ramaphosa says
• Biovac, Sanofi Pasteur to make pediatric vaccine in South Africa
• Africa’s biggest bank says Ramaphosa winning corruption battle
• Absa South Africa rules out dividends with profit down 40%
• Nissan follows Volkswagen in starting car assembly in Ghana
• Ethiopia prime minister trades his Nobel peace prize for civil war
• Uganda to start building oil export pipeline in first half 2021
• Absence may make eurobond investors fonder of African issuers

N.B. Full stories of above headlines are available on Reuters & Bloomberg

macroafricaintel Daily Brief | 19 Nov

By Rafiq Raji, PhD
Twitter: @DrRafiqRaji, @macroafrica

Global Markets
• China to cut tariffs, boost imports of high-quality goods and
services: Xi says
• Sliding dollar steadies as virus worries persist
• Asia stocks ease from highs, bonds count on Fed support
• Wall Street dives as shutdown worries overshadow vaccine hopes
• Oil prices ease a rising covid-19 cases outweigh vaccine optimism
• Brent down 0.4% at $44.17, WTI down 0.7% at $41.53 (0345GMT)
• Gold eases as dollar firms, vaccine progress weighs
• Spot gold down 0.2% at $1,867.43/oz., futures down 0.4% at $1,866.60 (0418GMT)

Key African events or data releases today
[Posts & comments at my Twitter handles @DrRafiqRaji, @macroafrica]
• South Africa central bank decides interest rates [fcst. 3.5%, prev. 3.5%]
• AfCFTA council of ministers meet (20 Nov.)
• South Africa state capture inquiry continues; Zondo to rule on Zuma recusal application
• Bank of Ghana MPC (18-23 Nov) [fcst. 14.5%, prev. 14.5%]
• Covid-19 updates by authorities across the continent

Key African events or data releases yesterday & early a.m today
Reuters
• Coronavirus cases in Africa surpass the 2 mln mark: Reuters tally
• Need to treat all creditors equally led to Zambia default, c.bank says
• Congo declares end of ebola outbreak, sees lessons for covid fight
• Ethiopia says disarms Tigray peacekeepers in Somalia over security
• Ethiopia troops push for regional capital, rebels promise ‘hell’
• Ethiopia seeks arrest of 76 military officers linked to Tigray leaders
• Uganda politician and pop star Bobi Wine says he has been arrested
• Oil companies tighten Nigeria security as protests, job losses stoke tension
• Consortium pulls plug on South Afriac’s Thabametsi coal plant
• Malawi police arrest pastor wanted in South Africa for fraud, money laundering
• In U-turn, Kenya plans to defer $690 mln in debt repayments under
G20 intiative
• Tigray peacekeepers in Somalia disarmed by Ethiopia colleagues, sources say
• Proposal to nationalise South Africa central bank sends ‘negative
signal’ – treasury
• Vedanta Zinc suspends mining at South Africa’s Gamsberg mine after accident
• South Africa court rules insurer Santam should pay hotel group’s
virus-related claim
• Congo declares end of ebola outbreak that killed 55
• Morocco PM says Western Sahara wall at centre of dispute completed
• UN pulls $100 mln from emergency fund in bid to avert famines

Bloomberg
• Ethiopia conflict precipitates mounting humanitarian crisis
• Riots erupt in Uganda after arrest of presidential candidate
• South Africa will avoid debt crisis, President Ramaphosa says
• Awaiting South Africa bailout, land bank locks out farmers
• Zambia central bank hold key interest at record low 8%
• Ghana denies interfering in gold fund probe after official quits
• Kenyans fear they’re on their own as covid-19 surges again
• Santam loses virus-related case in test for South Africa insurers
• Ethiopia freezes assets of fund accused of backing war in Tigray

N.B. Full stories of above headlines are available on Reuters & Bloomberg

macroafricaintel Daily Brief | 18 Nov

By Rafiq Raji, PhD
Twitter: @DrRafiqRaji, @macroafrica

Global Markets
• World shares slip after US retail sales dampen vaccine euphoria
• US retail sales lose speed, manufacturing picks up in October
• Container freight rates soar on consumer goods boom, supply chain kinks
• Oil mixed as hopes OPEC+ delays supply increase offset demand concerns
• Brent up 0.1% at $43.78, WTI down 0.1% at $41.40 (0430GMT)
• Gold inches lower as Covid-19 vaccine optimism weighs on appeal
• Spot gold down 0.1% at $1,877.39/oz., futures down 0.5% at $1,875.30 (0344GMT)

Key African events or data releases today
[Posts & comments at my Twitter handles @DrRafiqRaji, @macroafrica]
• South Africa’s Ramaphosa hosts 3rd SA investment summit
• 4th meeting of AfCFTA senior trade officials; council of ministers meet on 20 Nov.
• South Africa state capture inquiry continues; Zondo to rule on Zuma recusal application
• South Africa retail sales Sep-20 [fcst. -0.3% yy, prev. -4.2%]
• Kenya’s Kenyatta & Odinga launch BBI signatures collection (19 Nov)
• South Africa central bank MPC (17-19 Nov) [fcst. 3.5%, prev. 3.5%]
• Bank of Ghana MPC (18-23 Nov) [fcst. 14.5%, prev. 14.5%]
• Covid-19 updates by authorities across the continent

Key African events or data releases yesterday & early a.m today
Reuters
• Ethiopia accues Tigray forces of destroying bridges leading to
regional capital
• Ethiopia claims Tigray victories, says army marching to state capital
• Nigeria’s president vows to prevent repeat of anti-police brutality protests
• US condemns Tigray leaders for attacking Eritrea
• Army patrol discovers 29 bodies in eastern Congo
• Trump could withdraw troops from Somalia as part of global pullback
• Ethiopia says its troops marching on Tigray capital
• Africa governance worsens for first time in a decade: survey
• Endeavour to become West Africa’s biggest gold miner with $2 bln Teranga deal
• Full-scale humanitarian crisis unfolding in Ethiopia – UN refugee agency
• Derivatives committee asked to rule on Zambia debt non-payment
• Nobel body urges peace in Ethiopia where laureate engaged in conflict
• After continental retreat, South Africa retailers strain for profits at home
• Ethiopia carries out air strikes in Tigray, PM says surrender ultimatum over
• Germany files espionage charges against Egypt-born man

Bloomberg
• It’s time to buy South Africa Inc., nation’s no.2 pension fund says
• Zimbabwe plans to abandon fixing prices for commodities
• Cocoa’s OPEC turns New York market into trader battleground
• South Africa state arms maker fires workers after bailout snub
• South Africa signs plan to support $908 mln sugar industry
• Morocco sets hard line over ending Western Sahara fighting
• OPEC+ voices caution on oil market as it mulls output-hike delay
• Nigeria says Air France, KLM, Lufthansa to resume flights
• Pastor’s escape strains South Africa ties with Malawi
• Billionaire Gertler buys royalty rights in Congo cobalt project
• Perenco in talks to take majority share of Ivory Coast oil well
• Ivory Coast & Ghana may seek to boost cocoa prices
• South Africa study puts covid deaths much higher than official toll

N.B. Full stories of above headlines are available on Reuters & Bloomberg

macroafricaintel Daily Brief | 17 Nov

By Rafiq Raji, PhD
Twitter: @DrRafiqRaji, @macroafrica

Global Markets
• Coronavirus bigger risk to US economy than election dispute: Reuters poll
• Asian stocks edge higher after vaccine hopes push Wall Street to record highs
• Oil prices edge higher ahead of OPEC+ meeing, vaccine hopes
• Brent up 0.4% at $43.98, WTI up 0.3% at $41.47 (0104GMT)
• Gold inches higher on softer dollar, virus woes: vaccine hopes cap gains
• Spot gold up 0.1% at $1,890.27/oz., futures up 0.1% at $1,889.70 (0327GMT)

Key African events or data releases today
[Posts & comments at my Twitter handles @DrRafiqRaji, @macroafrica]
• South Africa’s Ramaphosa participates in 12th BRICS virtual summit
• OPEC+ JMMC meeting; weighs 3-mth cuts extension [final decision on 1 Dec]
• Ghana ruling NPP’s Akufo-Addo & NDC’s Mahama on the campaign trail
• South Africa state capture inquiry continues; Zondo to rule on Zuma recusal application
• South Africa central bank MPC (17-19 Nov) [fcst. 3.5%, prev. 3.5%]
• Bank of Ghana MPC (18-23 Nov) [fcst. 14.5%, prev. 14.5%]
• Covid-19 updates by authorities across the continent

Key African events or data releases yesterday & early a.m today
Reuters
• Africa governance worsens for first time in a decade: survey
• Uganda leader meets Ethiopia official, urges talks
• Tigray leader urges international censure of Ethiopia offensive
• ‘Give us time,’ Ethiopia says of Tigray offensive
• Ethiopia resists mediation as it bombs Tigray capital
• Nigeria ex-president goes to Ethiopia amid mediation push
• EU says won’t monitor Uganda election, limiting poll’s international scrutiny
• Schools close and student pregnancies rise in lockdown Kenya
• Ethiopia says Tigray town seized, war embroils Eritrea
• Ethiopia denies mediation over Tigray underway in Uganda
• South Africa’s Zuma says graft inquiry biased, seeks judge’s recusal
• Zambia on track for protracted debt overhaul as creditors slam lack
of engagement
• Egypt showcases scores of 2,500 year old coffins
• eSwatini’s prime minister tests positive for covid-19
• Pro-Sisi party in commanding position in Egypt parliamentary polls
• Ethiopia seizes town in Tigray, says 10,000 prisoners missing
• US condemns Tigray forces’ attacks on Eritrea
• Gunmen in western Ethiopia kill at least 34 people in bus attack,
rights body says
• Number of refugees fleeing Ethiopia to Sudan surpasses 20,000 – UN

Bloomberg
• Zimbabwe blueprint sees economy expanding 5% a year through 2025
• Ivory Coast cocoa harvesting picks up after election unrest
• Zambia sees deal with Glencore over Mopani copper within a month
• Nigeria plans to start a bridge bank to aid struggling lenders
• Nigeria investors tipped to ignore signs stocks are overheating
• Nigeria inflation rate rises on surging food costs
• Zambia finance minister says bondholders to blame for default
• Warning to veteran politicians as Libya talks to yield govt
• Endeavour Mining to acquire rival Teranga Gold for $1.86 bln in West
Africa expansion
• South Africa’s Sasol $12.8 bln US project reaches finish with last unit
• Kenya doctors threaten strike as virus infections, deaths surge
• South Africa’s Vodacom resets targets with post-pandemic light on horizon
• South Sudan to use its first IMF funding to stabilize currency

N.B. Full stories of above headlines are available on Reuters & Bloomberg

macroafricaintel Daily Brief | 16 Nov

By Rafiq Raji, PhD
Twitter: @DrRafiqRaji, @macroafrica

Global Markets
• Asian stocks hit record peak as vaccine hopes dampen virus fears
• China’s factory output beats forecasts as Asia shakes off covid slump
• Oil climbs higher on China, Japan rebound, hopes of OPEC+ supply curb
• Brent up 1% at $43.22, WTI up 1.4% at $40.67 (0204GMT)
• Gold hits 1-wk peak as softer dollar, worsening pandemic lift appeal
• Spot gold up 0.5% at $1,896.85/oz., futures up 0.5% at $1,894.90 (0329GMT)

Key African events or data releases today
[Posts & comments at my Twitter handles @DrRafiqRaji, @macroafrica]
• Nigeria inflation Oct-20 [fcst. 14.0% yy, prev. 13.7%]
• Ghana ruling NPP’s Akufo-Addo & NDC’s Mahama on the campaign trail
• South Africa state capture inquiry continues
• South Africa central bank MPC (17-19 Nov) [fcst. 3.5%, prev. 3.5%]
• Covid-19 updates by authorities across the continent

Key African events or data releases over the weekend & early a.m today
Reuters
• US condemns Tigray forces’ attacks on Eritrea
• Gunmen in western Ethiopia kill at least 34 people in bus attack,
rights body says
• Number of refugees fleeing Ethiopia to Sudan surpasses 20,000 – UN
• Ethiopia PM says the country can achieve objectives of Tigray
operation ‘by itself’
• In escalation of Ethiopia war, Tigray leader says his forces fired
rockets at Eritrea
• Rockets fired at Eritrea capital from Ethiopia, diplomats say
• Fleeing Tigray war, Ethiopians cross river to Sudan
• Demonstrators demand better conditions for Canary Islands’ migrant arrivals
• ‘The soldiers kept shooting’: witnesses testify in Lagos protest probe
• Zambia will not pay eurobond coupon before grace period expires – finmin
• France says it has killed senior militant operative in Mali
• Ethiopians fleeing to Sudan describe air strikes & machete killings in Tigray
• Polisario leader says Western Sahara ceasefire with Morocco is over
• Ethiopia claims big advance in Tigray, Amnesty reports mass killing
• Tigray says two missile strikes on Ethiopia sites targeted military
• After Ivory Coast election, fighting comes to a once-calm town
• IMF says any aid to Zambia requires steps to restore debt sustainability
• Ethiopia: Tigray conflict risks spiralling out of control: UN’s Bachelet
• US condemns ‘massacre of civilians’ in Ethiopia’s Tigray
• Refugee exodus to Sudan swells as war crimes feared in Ethiopia’s Tigray
• 20 migrants drown in Libya shipwreck, fourth accident this week
• Ethiopia denies boming Tigray’s Tekeze power dam
• Senior South Africa ANC leader Magashule granted bail in graft case
• War crimes feared in Ethiopia’s Tigray conflict
• UN says more than 14,500 have fled Ethiopia to Sudan
• Zambia eurobond holders reject payment deferral request – finance ministry
• Ethiopia names new Tigray head as conflict boils
• Zambia heads toward Africa’s first post-covid default as debt deadlines loom
• Tanzania re-elected leader keeps finance minister Mpango in new govt
• AU chief sacks security head after Ethiopia questions loyalty
• Egypt: Man sets himself on fire in Cairo’s Tahrir square
• Nigeria case against JP Morgan over OPL 245 oil deal to go to trial
• Egypt transgender woman faces uphill battle against stigma

Bloomberg
• Asia Pacific nations sign the world’s biggest trade deal
• South Sudan to use its first IMF funding to stabilize currency
• SBM Bank (Mauritius) to appoint Servansingh as chairman, Week-End says
• Tigray confirms Eritrea strike as Ethiopia conflict spreads
• OPEC’s got to play the coronavirus waiting game
• Ethiopia Tigray leader confirms firing missiles at Eritrea
• OPEC+ gets scant relief from vaccine as it meets to discuss cuts
• Ethiopia arrests militant suspects planning attacks
• US Army names soldiers killed in Egypt helicopter crash
• Polisario quits Western Sahara 30-yr ceasefire after clashes
• Egypt unveils huge find of ancient coffins and gilded statues
• Ethiopia says rockets fired in Amhara region as violence spreads
• Kenya’s biggest tea grower 4-mth output rises 3.9%
• Nigeria central bank dollar sales fails to stop naira weakening
• WHO approves first ever vaccine for emergency use against polio
• Nigeria President Buhari signs amended banking bill into law
• South Africa Limpopo private sector coal plant project may be abandoned
• G20 back new rules to deepen debt help to poor hit by virus
• Ethiopia withdraws thousands of troops from neighbouring Somalia
• Zambia poised to be first Africa sovereign default in pandemic
• Zambia closer to default after bondholders refuse relief
• Morocco moves army to end Western Sahara blockade, Le360 reports
• South Africa ruling party official charged with graft, fraud
• France forces kill militant group commander in Mali
• Multichoice, Vivendi to team up on new Africa TV productions
• Tanzania targets annual average GDP growth of 8% over five years
• Old Mutual sees resilient South Africa consumers aiding growth
• Scores of civilians massacred in northern Ethiopia, Amnesty says
• Zambia’s plan to sell billionaire’s mines stuck in legal mire
• South Africa’s Eskom ordered to rectify pollution issues at 3 power plants
• European firms say South Africa’s poor utilities deter investment

N.B. Full stories of above headlines are available on Reuters & Bloomberg

macroafricaintel Daily Brief | 13 Nov

By Rafiq Raji, PhD
Twitter: @DrRafiqRaji, @macroafrica

Global Markets
• Republicans urge Trump to allow Biden briefings as US election
challenges sputter
• No voting system deleted or lost votes in US election: security groups
• Asian stocks fall as virus spread accelerates
• China president Xi Jinping decided to halt Ant’s IPO: WSJ
• Oil falls as Covid-19 spike stokes fuel demand fears; still set for
big weekly gain
• Brent down 0.8% at $43.17, WTI down 1.0% at $40.72 (0118GMT)
• Gold holds steady as virus wave offsets vaccine hopes
• Spot gold steady at $1,876.92/oz., futures up 0.1% at $1,874.50 (0044GMT)

Key African events or data releases today
[Posts & comments at my Twitter handles @DrRafiqRaji, @macroafrica]
• Nigeria finmin Ahmed chairs finance bill 2020 public consultation
• Ghana ruling NPP’s Akufo-Addo & NDC’s Mahama on the campaign trail
• South Africa state capture inquiry continues
• Covid-19 updates by authorities across the continent

Key African events or data releases yesterday & early a.m today
Reuters
• UN says 11,000 have fled Ethiopia to Sudan, 50% of them children
• Explosion in Ethiopia’s capital injures one man
• Nigeria case against JP Morgan over OPL 245 oil deal to go to trial
• Ethiopia says 242 TPLF activists caught planning ‘to sow chaos’
• Egypt transgender woman faces uphill battle against stigma
• Nigeria expects more Benin Bronze returns as soon as next year
• Ghana’s former president Jerry John Rawlings has died at the age of 73
• Ethiopia claims big advance in Tigray, suffering worsens
• 8 peacekeepers, including 6 Americans, killed in Egypt’s Sinai
helicopter crash
• South Africa’s unemployment rate reaches record high above 30%
• South Africa president says travel to all countries will be allowed
• Ethiopia parliament lifts prosecution immunity for Tigray leader
• Zimbabwe journalist Chin’ono denied bail after 2nd arrest
• ‘Humanitarian e-commerce’ thrives in Somalia amid pandemic
• Ethiopia to set up ‘transitional’ rule in parts of Tigray: minister
• 7 Burkina Faso soldiers killed in ambush of presidential election
• Ethiopia claims ‘liberation’ of west Tigray, humanitarian crisis looms
• Kenya’s KCB to restructure a fifth of its loans this year, says CFO
• Petra Diamonds investigates charges Tanzania subsistence miners abused
• Marubeni to pull out of South Africa coal-fired power plant project
• Ethiopia’s PM says bodies of tied military personnel found in Tigray
• Ivory Coast president and opposition to pursue talks amid deadly standoff
• South Africa should aim to cover 10% of population via COVAX, advisors say
• Food aid, medical supplies blocked from Ethiopia’s Tigray, UN warns
• More than 10,000 people fled Ethiopia conflict to Sudan, official says

Bloomberg
• Yield mania gives breathing space to indebted emerging markets
• Zambia stares down the default barrel with key creditors to vote
• South Africa to deport Dutch arms dealer tied to Charles Taylor
• South Africa’s Eskom ordered to rectify pollution issues at three power plants
• European firms say South Africa’s poor utilities deter investment
• South Africa’s Old Mutual CEO sees strong recovery for insurance firm
• Egypt cuts rates for 2nd time in boost for virus-hit economy
• Biggest Kenya bank pauses Ethiopia entry on virus uncertainty
• JP Morgan to reveal bankers who approved suspicious Nigeria oil payments
• Nigeria stocks surge most since 2015, trigger circuit breaker
• Zimbabwe’s Hopewell Chin’ono denied bail over graft claims
• Ghana ex-military ruler turned democrat, Rawlings dies age 73
• ‘We can’t be beaten’, says president of rebel Ethiopia region
• 7 peacekeepers killed in Egypt Sinai helicopter crash, officials say
• Ethiopians donate blood, money to back incursion in rebel region
• G-20 looks to deepen debt relief drive with China’s coordination
• European firms say South Africa’s poor utilities deter investment
• Ghana forces Eni to merge oil field with local firm’s discovery
• South Africa’s unemployment rate swings back to 17-yr high
• IEA cuts oil demand outlook as vaccines won’t rescue market soon
• Africa’s largest economy Nigeria to rectify continent-wide trade zone
• Egypt’s focus on local sugar is bad news for European exports
• AU appeals for calm in disputed Sahara region
• South Africa takes steps to stop regional covid surge spreading
• Nigeria probes protesters under terror-financing law
• Boeing confident in China with thousands of jet orders forecast
• Zimbabwe under investor pressure to end gold sales monopoly

N.B. Full stories of above headlines are available on Reuters & Bloomberg