Register and its all Free.
If you are tracking the NSE Do it via RICHLIVE and use Mozilla Firefox
as your Browser.
0930-1500 KENYA TIME
Normal Board - The Whole shebang
Prompt Board Next day settlement
Expert Board All you need re an Individual stock.
The Latest Daily PodCast can be found here on the Front Page of the site
Ally turned nemesis: How Gove forced Boris Johnson to surrender @FT
Law & Politics
Boris Johnson chose London’s St Ermin’s hotel for what was meant to be
the launch of his Conservative leadership campaign for its
associations with his hero, Winston Churchill, for it was here that
Churchill set up Britain’s wartime special operations team.
But when Mr Johnson turned up, it was not to deliver a Churchillian
call to arms but to run up the white flag. The victor of the Brexit
campaign was now the vanquished, his hopes of becoming prime minister
With rumours swirling that Mr Johnson was considering pulling out, one
of his supporters implored him: “March to the sound of gunfire.” Some
25 Conservative MPs had gathered in the hotel to cheer him on but grew
increasingly anxious as their candidate failed to appear.
When he did emerge, Mr Johnson initially sounded like he was pitching
to become prime minister. Then the bombshell: as his wife Marina
looked on, the former London mayor declared: “In view of the
circumstances in parliament, that person cannot be me”.
The room fell silent. A few minutes later Mr Johnson departed without
taking questions, but the remarkable story behind his trajectory from
bookies’ favourite to non-runner was already becoming clear.
Mr Johnson’s nemesis was Michael Gove, the justice secretary — the man
who was until yesterday running his leadership campaign. Ever since
they agreed to front the Brexit campaign — over slow-cooked lamb at
the former mayor’s Islington home in February — their friendship
But by the afternoon before the declaration, Mr Gove was having second
thoughts. His allies said Mr Johnson’s attempts to rally support for
his leadership had been “chaotic” and that key people were not coming
“Michael felt that he didn’t have the grip and focus needed to be the
prime minister of the country,” said one friend. “If you can’t
assemble a team, then that is a serious problem.”
Then came the ominous leaking of an email on Wednesday night, written
by Mr Gove’s wife Sarah Vine, a columnist for the Daily Mail, in which
she raised questions about Mr Johnson’s character and his credibility
in the party, as well as with press baron Rupert Murdoch and Daily
Mail editor Paul Dacre.
The email was sent by Ms Vine to Mr Gove and two press aides — but was
said to have been accidentally copied to a member of the public, who
then passed it to Sky News. “It was written to be leaked,” said one
supporter of Mr Johnson.
Social Networks Could Predict the Next Brexit @bershidsky @bv
Law & Politics
The failure of polls and bookmakers to predict the outcome of the
Brexit referendum will push the financial sector, which relies on
accurate information, to search for alternatives. Some claim they
obtained good results from scraping social media, which may have been
the best way to predict the June 23 vote result.
Brevan Howard Asset Management, co-founded by the billionaire Alan
Howard, reportedly reduced risk ahead of the vote after using
artificial intelligence to study social network data. Its $16 billion
macro fund gained 1 percent on the day the results were announced;
hedge funds globally lost 1.6 percent. Other funds, Bloomberg News
reports, are increasing investments in this technology.
The publicly available social network data on elections don't appear
to be very serious. Most of the information involves counting tweets
or posts that mention a certain candidate or cause. In an article
analyzing the Instagram activity that preceded the referendum,
Vyacheslav Polonski, of Oxford University, found that "leave"
supporters far outnumbered and were more active than "remainers."
Twitter provided similar data about user activity: The "leave"
campaign spurred more discussion. The New York Times studied Facebook
data and found that "leave" generated more user engagement (likes,
shares and comments).
This raw data doesn't mean much, though: A vocal, angry minority often
makes more noise than a level-headed majority. The same hashtags can
be used by both sides, often sarcastically. The U.K. is particularly
fond of sarcasm, making it especially difficult to determine a
poster's sentiment by hashtag or keyword. And what does it matter how
widely a campaign is discussed if it's mostly ridiculed?
And yet there's definitely something there. Andranik Tumasjan, a
professor at the Technical University of Munich, was among the first
to publish analysis of how social network activity correlates with
national election results. In 2010, Tumasjan and his co-writers
claimed that the number of tweets about each party fairly accurately
predicted the results of Germany's 2009 parliamentary elections. Other
researchers later showed that the margin of error in Tumasjan's
research was actually much bigger than in traditional polls.
It was followed by more sophisticated work that relied not just on the
frequency of mentions, but also on different varieties of sentiment
analysis. That's where artificial intelligence comes in: In the
best-case scenario, researchers hire people to label thousands of
posts as positive, negative or neutral and mask whatever other nuances
the designers of the study consider important. Then, an artificial
neural network is "trained" on these inputs until it is capable of
"grading" posts on its own. Yet problems remained. In 2012, Daniel
Gayo-Avello of the University of Oviedo in Spain wrote of the body of
work accumulated in the area:
It's not prediction at all! I have not found a single paper predicting
a future result. All of them claim that a prediction could have been
made; i.e. they are post-hoc analysis and, needless to say, negative
results are rare to find.
That's still the case with most published work. Real forecasts have
proved elusive. For example, a team of researchers from Cardiff and
Manchester Universities used Twitter to predict the outcome of the
2015 U.K. national elections, which the pollsters got woefully wrong.
So did this team, even though it used sophisticated sentiment
analysis: Their model predicted a hung Parliament with the Labour
Party gaining most seats.
In some cases, social network analysis has yielded slightly better
results than the polls -- but it suffers from the same shortcomings as
traditional surveys. Such analysis underestimated, for example, the
performance of France's hard-right National Front -- a party whose
backers are often reluctant to voice their sentiments publicly.
Other hard-to-overcome problems include the self-selection biases and
the geographic factor: Accurate geolocation data are needed to predict
the performance of regional parties such as the Scottish nationalists
and how the regional vote will split. Such information often isn't
In other words, in this rather young (but already crowded) field,
academics are still struggling with the optimal design of a survey
using social network data. And yet, apparently, some tech-savvy
investors are already making money by combining traditional public
opinion research with a "big data" component.
Traditional pollsters should embrace the technology, too -- that may
help perfect the methodology -- and start reporting the results along
with those of phone and online surveys. It's getting harder to make
the right predictions with the old toolbox. After all, in situations
such as the U.K. referendum, every vote counts and poll data can
affect the turnout. The new tech is imperfect, and it's not easy to
figure out how to apply it, but the world is changing too fast to
@Barclays shares have plunged 26 percent since last week's vote to leave the EU @business
Barclays Plc Chief Executive Officer Jes Staley said concern about
earnings, rather than capital or liquidity, has caused the
“significant” dip in the bank’s share price since the U.K. voted to
leave the European Union.
The bank may be hurt by an economic slowdown in the U.K. that’s much
more likely than it was a week ago, Staley said in a Bloomberg
Television interview with Erik Schatzker on Thursday. Still, the
company isn’t changing the strategy of selling down its stake in its
Africa unit, and agreed-upon sales of non-core assets will go through
regardless of the Brexit vote, he said.
“We got no sense of concern about our capital nor liquidity, and
properly so, but there is a concern about our earnings,” Staley said.
The share price decline “is being driven by concern about the U.K.
economy going forward and concern about our investment bank, if in
fact there is a challenge between EU and London as a financial
Barclays shares have plunged 26 percent since last week’s vote to
leave the EU. A number of analysts have downgraded the bank’s shares
and cut its earnings estimates as investors remain uncertain about the
fallout from Brexit. One of the financial industry’s main concerns is
whether it will be allowed to continue doing business across the EU
from Britain, known as passporting.
“There will be a lot of political uncertainty, and generally political
uncertainty leads to economic uncertainty and a slowdown in
investing,” Staley said. “People put off decisions from major
corporations to individuals wanting to buy an apartment.”
While the bank’s growth in the U.K. may stall, Staley said he expected
a “pop” in earnings from units that operate in other currencies that
appreciated against the pound. About 60 percent of the investment
bank’s revenue comes from U.S. and 50 percent of credit-card revenue
generated in Germany and U.S., he said.
Dealing with the fallout from Brexit is just the latest challenge for
Staley, recruited seven months ago to revamp the ailing British
lender. He also has to improve returns at the investment bank, which
some investors and analysts have suggested he spin off, sell down
Barclays’s majority stake in its African business, separate the
securities unit and the consumer bank, and dispose of more than 50
billion pounds ($66 billion) of unwanted or toxic assets from its bad
“We cannot let this referendum vote change the strategy,” Staley said.
“I’m not sure we can push faster or harder than we are now,” he said,
adding that the firm is on track to “reduce our headcount by tens and
tens of thousands of people over the course of this year.”
Still, the shares have slumped 49 percent since he started Dec. 1,
partly driven by the surprise decision to cut the dividend in half for
the next two years. Staley said the reduction in the payout gives the
bank more flexibility to dispose of non-core assets, even in a
“We don’t sleep with our stock price at this level,” the CEO said.
Barclays trades “at a significant discount to book value, and it was
not helped on Friday or Monday, and we need to correct that.”
Gold and Silver as Stimulus Bets Make Them Brexit's Winners
Gold climbed for a fifth week and silver surged to the highest price
since September 2014 as investors speculated that central banks will
need to continue supporting the global economy in the wake of
Britain’s vote to quit the European Union.
Gold added 0.8 percent to $1,332.62 an ounce at 3:20 p.m. in
Singapore, according to Bloomberg generic pricing, as the metal in the
U.K. currency rallied back above 1,000 pounds an ounce. Silver jumped
as much as 3.6 percent to $19.396 an ounce and traded at $19.2405.
Prices have soared 8.4 percent this week, the most in nearly three
Venezuela Mess Prods China to Reassess Africa Lending Spree @business
The threat of Venezuela defaulting on Chinese debt is putting pressure
on Beijing to reassess how easily it doles out money to
commodity-dependent nations, especially those in Africa.
As low oil prices ravage Venezuela’s economy and embattled leader
Nicolas Maduro seeks better terms on Chinese loans, China is paying
greater attention to things like fiscal stability and political risk
in overseas lending. Increasing such scrutiny could complicate
President Xi Jinping’s pledge to spread $60 billion in aid across
Africa over the next three years, much of it preferential loans and
state-backed investments in countries heavily reliant on resource
exports and prone to instability.
"What we learned from the Venezuelan case is that China should be more
cautious and sophisticated about its overseas lending and investment,"
said Xue Li, director of international strategy at the state-run
Chinese Academy of Social Sciences’s Institute of World Economics and
Politics. “Compared to Latin America, Africa holds greater strategic
significance for China and there’d be more at stake if things go
More than $86 billion of loans sent to Sub-Saharan Africa between 2000
and 2014 helped China build enormous diplomatic clout and secure raw
materials to fuel its economic boom. The Venezuelan collapse has
underscored the dangers to that financing model, even as Xi pushes to
accelerate Chinese investment around the globe.
Being more selective with lending would make it harder for China to
use aid to bolster its geopolitical position. Placing stricter
conditions on countries that get assistance would be a departure from
the no-strings-attached approach that’s made China an attractive
alternative to Western benefactors and underpinned resource-backed
deals in places such as Angola, Ghana, Sudan, as well as Venezuela.
Many of those countries have been hit hard by the global decline in
raw material prices as China’s own economy slows. While the Bloomberg
Commodity Index has recovered since the start of the year, prices
remain at 15-year lows. A barrel of oil is trading around $48, less
than half of what crude cost in 2014.
Take Angola. Like Venezuela, the African petrostate faces more
difficulty paying off debt, much of it from China. It was the region’s
largest recipient of Chinese loans between 2000 and 2014, getting
$21.2 billion, according to an April report by the China-Africa
Research Initiative at Johns Hopkins University. In October, the
country announced another $6 billion in borrowing from China to
support various projects.
Meanwhile, Moody’s cut Angola’s credit rating two notches to B1 and
lowered its outlook to negative in April, citing the oil-price slump.
The International Monetary Fund has offered Angola a $4.5 billion loan
and assistance restructuring its state-owned oil company. Add to that
political uncertainty: President Jose Eduardo dos Santos may be
setting up his billionaire daughter, Isabel, as a possible leader
after his planned retirement in two years.
Kenya, Ghana and Mozambique have all turned to the IMF for emergency
support as falling commodity prices put government finances under
strain. Nigeria, which lost its status as Africa’s top oil producer to
Angola this year amid militant attacks, is facing recession and the
government is struggling to pay salaries. China wrote down a $5
million loan to Mozambique in June.
Facing such pressures, China has begun to demand greater financial
transparency and responsibility from recipient nations, said Lin
Boqiang, the director of Xiamen University’s energy economics research
center and an adviser to the National Energy Administration of China.
The message is that China’s shouldn’t squander the world’s largest
stockpile of foreign reserves.
"China’s more experienced now," Lin said. "It now considers a risk
index when making funding decisions. It’s more careful about the terms
of loans, asset evaluation of investment projects, and also political
security of the recipient countries, because much uncertainty stems
from unstable politics."
Outwardly, China’s commitments in Africa continue to expand. Xi
promised a new era of cooperation while announcing the $60 billion
program during his tour in December. Nigerian President Muhammadu
Buhari returned from a trip to Beijing in April with a $6 billion loan
and a currency swap deal.
Republic of Congo President Denis Sassou Nguesso will head to China on
Monday on a trip to "focus on cooperation between the two countries,"
the official Xinhua News Agency reported. The country has been the
sixth-biggest recipient of Chinese loans, according to the CARI
But China has grown more cautious behind the scenes, said one former
Chinese diplomat stationed in Africa who now works at a state-backed
research institution. It’s increasingly withdrawing money and workers
because of financial and security risks, although such moves are not
publicized, said the former diplomat, who asked to not be named
because he wasn’t authorized to discuss the matter.
“There must be boundaries, beyond which operations should halt," said
Xue, of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. "It’s necessary to
carry out regular risk assessments to ensure overall economic
Another lesson underscored by Venezuela has been China’s reliance on
incumbent regimes to maintain its relationships. Should the opposition
succeed in efforts to recall Maduro or defeat him at the polls, China
could find itself relying on an unfamiliar government to repay at
least $65 billion in loans. Hedging against the prospect of political
change by establishing ties with a wider range of political players
raises its own awkward questions. It could clash with China’s
oft-stated desire to stay out of the internal affairs of nations.
"Any overt involvement in proposing or imposing economic, let alone
political, restructuring in any of these countries -- whether
unilaterally or as part of an agreement with other countries or
international financial institutions -- would be a major break from
previous Chinese policies and precedent," said Matt Ferchen, head of
the China and the Developing World Program at the Carnegie–Tsinghua
Center for Global Policy in Beijing.
"But it’s hard to see how China can avoid such involvement, if it is
to avoid serious economic and, even diplomatic, losses," he said.
The China Loan Book is now severely under water. Furthermore, The
Point about the Chinese Bet on Incumbency in a time of maximum
upheaval is also a challenge to manage.
Angolan President Tells IMF His Country Wants to End Loan Talks @BBGAfrica
Angola said it no longer wants to continue talks with the
International Monetary Fund about a loan to help the oil producer cope
with a slide in prices, IMF spokesman Gerry Rice said.
Angolan President Jose Eduardo dos Santos has said that his government
only wants to continue dialogue on the IMF’s annual assessments of the
Angolan economy, Rice said at the fund’s regular press conference in
The IMF mission chief to Angola, Ricardo Velloso, completed a two-week
visit to Angola earlier this month after the country’s Finance
Ministry on April 6 said it was seeking support to “complement the
already steadfast response to the decline in oil prices.”
State revenue in Africa’s second-biggest producer of the commodity has
plunged and the kwanza has declined against the dollar due to the
weakening of crude prices since mid-2014. Angola’s government relies
on the oil industry for about 95 percent of export income.
Probably could not face the forensic Audit but this is like the
@JDMahama case, There is one number Dos Santos will have to dial and
that is Madam @Lagarde IMF but evidently it will only be done with him
kicking and screaming.
Congo's Kabila Calls for Voter Registration, Warns of Meddling
The Democratic Republic of Congo’s president called for the start of a
voter registration process, a step that may delay elections due later
this year, and warned other nations against interfering in the
“It must be remembered, once again, that Congo is a sovereign nation,”
President Joseph Kabila said Wednesday in an address broadcast on
national television on the eve of Congo’s Independence Day. He warned
of “untimely and illicit foreign interventions in the internal
political affairs of our country,” without giving further details.
The U.S. last week imposed sanctions on a senior Congolese police
officer for his role in election-related violence. Kabila in his
speech said the country thanked its security forces for their work “in
extremely difficult conditions in defense of the nation.”
Shopping in South Africa Buying on credit is so nice @TheEconomist
A QUEUE snaked through the first Starbucks shop south of the Sahara,
winding out of the door and down the block. It greeted the American
coffee chain’s boss, Howard Schultz, when he visited the Johannesburg
store for the first time recently. “I have been to many, many
Starbucks openings around the world,” Mr Schultz marvelled. “I have
never seen a line like this after a week of our opening.” Few of the
South Africans shuffling in line had ever tasted Starbucks, but they
felt sure it was worth the hour-long wait. “Celebrities are always
drinking it,” said Lebo Nkosi, 26, a shop assistant at a nearby mall,
as she waited with her friends.
Two months after opening, this Starbucks still pulls impressive queues
on weekends. Famous international brands are a bit of a novelty in
South Africa. Similarly enthusiastic crowds met the launches of the
first Krispy Kreme Doughnuts and H&M clothing shops in Africa late
last year. Burger King, which opened in 2013, had long queues for
months. For big global brands, South Africa’s market offers avid
consumers and a stepping stone to the rest of Africa.
The appetite for venti lattes and grande frappuccinos is remarkable
given the parlous state of South Africa’s economy. It is expected to
grow just 0.6% this year, down from 1.3% in 2015. So far, though, this
hasn’t stopped the country’s aspirational middle class from splurging.
When the spiffy new Mall of Africa (home to South Africa’s second
Starbucks shop), opened in late April it drew more than 120,000 people
and snarled up traffic for miles. It also led to a shoot-out between
rival taxi fleets, fighting over who would get to pick up shoppers.
Not all who splash out on luxuries are truly well-off. Many of the new
middle class are living beyond their means. According to the
government, nearly half of South Africans with access to credit are
struggling to meet their monthly payments; they may have to stop
Though retail sales beat expectations by rising 4.0% year-on-year in
February, they disappointed by growing just 1.5% in April. Burger King
opened with a sizzle, but has since scaled back its plans, from 100
stores by the end of June to 75 or 80. With the Mall of Africa’s
opening, there may be a glut of retail space. Starbucks was planning
to expand slowly. But after seeing the crowds in Johannesburg, a
bullish Mr Schultz had second thoughts: “I think this market is going
to be larger than we probably thought.”
South Africa clears AB InBev's takeover of SABMiller
South Africa cleared Anheuser-Busch Inbev's $100 billion-plus deal to
acquire SABMiller on Thursday, putting the world's largest brewer "on
track" to complete the merger within the next six months.
The merger will bring together AB InBev's Budweiser, Stella Artois and
Corona brands with SABMiller's Peroni, Grolsch and Pilsner Urquell and
brew almost a third of the world's beer, dwarfing rivals Heineken and
Having secured South Africa's approval for the deal AB InBev Chief
Executive Carlos Brito said it was on track to close the merger in the
second half of 2016, adding that South Africa was "a market that would
play a critical role in the combined company."
30th June 2016 Brexit storm hits markets and trade everywhere @Africa_Conf
A Brexit-dominated blog this week as Africa's economies count the cost
of the turmoil in Europe. In Zambia, President Edgar Lungu's
government cracks down on the independent media and Mozambique's
finance troubles escalate after the secret loan scandal. Finally,
Algeria's reforming bureaucrats make optimistic noises about oil and
AFRICA/EUROPE: Brexit storm hits markets and trade everywhere
African finance officials are preparing for more shockwaves after the
United Kingdom's vote last week to leave the European Union upset the
markets, wiping some two trillion dollars off the capital markets and
pushing sterling to its lowest level for 30 years. Analysts expect
Africa's biggest economies – Nigeria, South Africa, Egypt and Kenya –
to be the worst hit, as they were following the global credit crunch
in 2008. This time, the effects could be harsher.
On the first day after the Brexit vote, South Africa's rand fell by 7%
and Finance Minister Pravin Gordhanwarned that inward investment could
slow this year. For Nigeria, whose trade with the UK is worth some
US$8.5 billion and was due to double in the next five years, the
uncertainty around Brexit complicates an already poor outlook with low
oil prices and falling capital inflows.
Egypt's economy, already rocked by regional instability and falling
tourism revenues, will take another hit from Brexit. Kenyan officials
worry that the already difficult trade negotiations between the East
African Community and the EU could be held up further by the decision
to leave the union.
Treasuries in Africa already have much lower reserves because of lower
state revenues in the wake of China's slowdown and the commodity price
slump. Optimistic forecasts on the Brexit effect for Africa are thin
on the ground.
One, not entirely dispassionate voice, that of James Duddridge,
Britain's pro-Brexit Minister for Africa, has pledged that the UK's
relations with Africa would expand after it left the EU. Others,
including Duddridge's colleagues in government, don't share his
optimism, at least in the short term. They predict at least two years
of uncertainty as the UK tries to disentangle itself from Europe and
re-negotiate new trade deals in its own right.
For decades, the UK's trade relations with Africa have been governed
by rules negotiated by the EU under a succession of treaties such as
the Lomé Treaty or the Cotonou Agreement. It's unclear whether Britain
would offer tougher or better terms, once it leaves the EU. In the
meantime, much of London's diplomatic and negotiating skills will be
consumed by the tortuous process of extricating itself from Europe.
Consequently, London's already over-stretched expertise on Africa will
come under further strain.
As Europe dives into a period of infighting, according to a veteran
diplomat in London, African governments may see their best course of
action would be to reinforce relations with Asia's big economies,
China, India and Japan.
ZAMBIA: Editor arrested in pre-election crackdown on the media
A week after tax collection officials closed down Zambia's leading
independent daily newspaper, The Post, police arrested the paper's
publisher and veteran editor-in-chief, Fred M'membe, his wife Mutinta
and deputy managing editor Joseph Mwenda on 28 June. Although
President Edgar Lungu defended the actions of the Zambia Revenue
Authority against the newspaper, a court ruled it should be allowed to
resume full operations while it negotiates the size of its tax bill
with the government.
Under fire from journalists' unions in the region as well the
Committee to Protect Journalists, the government's actions are widely
seen as a bid to silence critics ahead of the general election on 4
August. The Post had started to run a series of stories about how the
electoral commission was registering foreigners to vote.
MOZAMBIQUE: Growth slowing as IMF talks tough to Maputo
There was tough talking between President Filipe Nyusi's government in
Maputo and a visiting delegation from the International Monetary Fund
as the row over the government's secret security loans of over $1.4
billion rumbles on.
There have been calls from the United States and United Kingdom for an
international audit of the loan deals set up by Credit Suisse and
Russia's VTB Bank.
The Fund has warned that Mozambique's growth this year may fall to
4.5%, compared with 6.6% last year. Michel Lazare, who led the IMF
delegation, welcomed the decision by state prosecutors to investigate
the state firms linked to the secret loans but announced the country's
total debt stock was now 86% of GDP.
ALGERIA: Energy production to rise after reshuffle
Oil and gas production are due to soar over the next five years,
according to Amine Mazouzi, the new chief executive of state oil
company Sonatrach. Mazouzi is one of a group of technocrats promoted
by President Abdelaziz Bouteflika's government in what some optimistic
commentators see as a wave of economic reform.
Mazouzi forecast that oil and gas production would rise by over 5%
this year and by as much as a third by 2020 as new fields come on
stream. It was demand-driven, he argued: Sonatrach reported that
Italy's ENI doubled its gas imports from Algeria last year, compared
with its purchases in 2014.