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May 30 (Reuters) – Kenya’s shilling and Zambia’s kwacha are expected to gain ground against the dollar and Ghana’s cedi will weaken, while Nigeria’s naira and Uganda’s shilling are forecast to hold steady in the next week to Thursday, traders said.


Kenya’s shilling is expected to gain ground, supported by dollar inflows from tea exporters and remittances, and low demand from importers waiting for better rates.

Commercial banks quoted the shilling at 130.50/131.50 per dollar, compared with last Thursday’s close of 131.50/132.50.

“I see importers staying away for now hoping for better rates. If they keep off and CBK (central bank) stays away, I see it taking down (the) 130 mark,” a trader at one commercial bank said.

The central bank says it only intervenes to smooth out volatility when the shilling is moving too fast in either direction, and has no preferred level.


Nigeria’s naira could trade around current levels next week, after the central bank intervened in the market, and its Open Market Operations (OMO) auctions also attracted foreign inflows that helped ease pressure from futures contracts that paid out this week.

LSEG data showed the naira trading at 1,421 to the dollar on the official market on Thursday, around the same range a week ago. The unit was quoted at 1,485 on the parallel market on Thursday.


“The exchange rate will remain volatile because the fundamentals such as crude oil receipts remain low,” one trader said. “But there is scope to appreciate because the central bank is keen for the naira not to fall below a certain threshold.”


Ghana’s cedi is expected to extend its decline against the dollar on persistent strong demand from local businesses.

LSEG data showed the cedi was bid at 14.69 per dollar, compared with last Thursday’s closing rate of 14.55.

“The local unit continued to face headwinds in recent sessions as FX illiquidity persists. Flows have been hard to come by, while demand for the greenback remains elevated — mainly from the manufacturing and commerce sectors,” said Sedem Dornoo, senior trader Absa Bank Ghana.

“Up ahead, it is likely the cedi will remain under pressure as FX demand remains firm.”

Chris Nettey, head of trading at Stanbic Bank Ghana, said the cedi continued to weaken despite the central bank’s assurances it would take steps to curb the decline and news the government had secured a draft memorandum of understanding on debt restructuring from bilateral creditors.


“We expect the narrative to continue with an eye on the actions of the central bank in the coming sessions,” he added.

The cedi is down by 19% so far this year against the dollar. The Bank of Ghana says this is due to high import demand, low export revenue and currency speculation.


The Ugandan shilling is seen trading in a stable range in the coming days, with most players staying on the sidelines as they await reading of the 2024/2025 (July-June) budget, traders said.

At 0955 GMT commercial banks quoted the shilling at 3,810/3,820,compared to last Thursday’s close of 3,820/3,830.

Uganda’s finance minister is expected to present the next financial year’s budget early June although the date has not yet been set.

“We’re unlikely to see a lot of activity before the budget,” said a trader at one commercial bank adding the shilling will mostly remain in a stable range around 3,800 against the dollar before then.



The kwacha may gain marginally against the dollar next week due to positive sentiment after bondholders accepted Zambia’s debt restructuring proposal.

On Thursday, the currency of Africa’s second-largest copper producer was trading at 27.10 per dollar from 26.20 a week ago.

“The short-term outlook for the local currency is modest gains owing to bondholder support for debt restructuring,” Access Bank said in a note.

(Reporting by George Obulutsa, Christian Akorlie, Chris Mfula, Elisha Bala-Gbogbo; Editing by Bate Felix)