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Crashing currency chaos spreads across the Global South @asiatimesonline
The Iranian rial: crash. The Turkish lira: crash. The Argentine peso:
crash. The Brazilian real: crash. There are multiple, complex,
parallel vectors at play in this wilderness of crashing currencies.
Turkey’s case is heavily influenced by the bubble of easy credit
created by European banks.
No more liquid dollars flooding emerging markets such as Turkey,
Brazil, Argentina, Indonesia or India. US interest rates are up. The
Fed stopped buying new bonds. The US Treasury is issuing new bond
debt. Thus QT, combined with a global, targeted trade war against
major emerging markets, spells out the new normal: the weaponization
of the US dollar.
It’s no wonder that Russia, China, Turkey, Iran – nearly every major
regional player invested in Eurasia integration – is buying gold with
the aim of progressively getting out of US dollar hegemony. As JP
Morgan himself coined it over a century ago, “Gold is money. All else
That is about to change. Russia and China are heavily invested in
buying gold. Russia has dumped US Treasuries en masse. And what the
BRICS had been discussing since the mid-2000s is now in motion; the
drive to build alternative payment systems to the US
Germany appears to be coming around to the idea. If that does happen,
it could possibly lead the way towards Europe redefining itself
geopolitically in terms of its military and strategic independence.
When and if that happens, arguably at some point in the next decade,
US foreign policy configured as an avalanche of sanctions may be
03-SEP-2018 :: Africa: The Belle at the Ball
I remember a time when My then 11 Year Old Daughter Layla had attended
the School Disco and when I picked her up, her eyes glittered and she
could scarcely stand still and I asked
''Darling, How was it?''
''And She said to me, Daddy, I danced and I danced and I didn't stop''
I wanted to pick her up and spin her and spin her because as Jean Rhys
wrote in her Novel ''Wide Sargasso Sea''
"Only the magic and the dream are true - all the rest's a lie." and "I
must remember about chandeliers and dancing, about swans and roses and
The reason my mind looped back to my 11 Year old Layla was because The
Financial Times's David Pilling had asked me about Theresa May's visit
Aly-Khan Satchu, a financial analyst in Nairobi, described the “mood
music” around the trip as “quite sweet”. One of the few commentators
to praise the prime minister’s dancing in Cape Town as per David.
I thought Theresa May deserved a Big Up and also said "Because of its
history Britain has a lot of leverage and indeed ground-level
knowledge of the continent so in a post-Brexit world it makes sense to
sweat its African equity."
"Britain preceded China and the US and is seeking to play to that
advantage. This is largely a 'born free' generation and the UK is wise
to play to that theme for multiple and overlapping reasons,"
The reason, dancing and giddiness came to mind was because Africa has
been a little swept off its Feet over the last few days. Since June,
Narendra Modi, India’s prime minister, Recep Erdogan, president of
Turkey, and Xi Jinping, president of China, have all made African
forays. Emmanuel Macron, president of France, has visited the
continent three times since November. President Kenyatta was received
by President Trump, Prime Minister Theresa May dialled up Africa last
week as did Angela Merkel and now just about everyone has trooped off
to China to make ''win-win'' music with Xi Jinping and his FOCAC gig.
John Ashbourne said ''African politicians should be praying for a
Sino-Western bidding war for their affections. A huge opportunity if
they can play it well''
Howard French responded ''No. They should go one step further and
devise well thought out development strategies based on a deep reading
of national interest generating as much local financing as possible,
and pushing hard on regional integration''
So We might well ask what is going on?
Let me give you some hard core data. The 50 countries in sub-Saharan
Africa have a combined output of $1.4tn, less than half the size of
France’s economy, according to International Monetary Fund estimates
for 2018. From 2000 to 2016, China loaned around $125 billion to the
continent, data from the China-Africa Research Initiative (CARI) at
Washington’s Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International
Studies shows. Chinese goods exports to Africa are eight times larger
than those of the UK and even bigger than the top three exporters
Germany, France and the US - combined.via FT A wave of African nations
are looking to restructure debt with China on the eve of a major
Beijing summit provides a reality check for the continent [Reuters]
Ethiopia and Zambia, heavy borrowers from China, have expressed desire
to restructure that debt, while bankers believe Angola and Congo
Republic have already done so, though details of such deals are
sparse. The International Monetary Fund says Cameroon, Ghana and
others face a high risk of debt distress, as does Djibouti, whose main
source of foreign loans is China, the Fund says, and which holds the
majority of external debt.
"China had a singular and positive influence on Africa. It rebalanced
the demand side for Africa's commodities and also bought those
commodities on a long-term basis. It was this which triggered the
African recovery some two decades ago, However, since then a
freewheeling China Inc has favorited elites, has facilitated
large-scale looting via inflated infrastructure, some of which were
white elephants on Day One, and has lumped the African citizen with
the tab. How this plays out is now the key to Sino-African relations
going forward. A Hambantota scenario would be problematic," referring
to the Sri Lankan port which has been leased to China for 99 years
The West is pushing back for a number of reasons. Certainly since
uncorking Libya, immigration in Europe is a big theme. There is a
clearer sense that in order to stem immigration, Europe needs to put
its shoulder to the wheel and look at how to stimulate African
Economies and job creation. President Trump is also rattling Xi
Jinping's Golden Cage and surely wants to bottle up China in the South
China Sea and hence The Indian Ocean becomes central. It even got a
mention in Trump and Uhuru's press release.
However, most of all, the West sees a very big debt crisis looming and
is positioning for the Fall-Out. The Dominoes have already started to
fall. Now we will really find out if Xi Jinping is Santa Claus?
Theresa May started her Trip in Cape Town which was particularly apt
given that on February 3rd 1960 another British Prime Minister Harold
''The wind of change is blowing through this continent. Whether we
like it or not, this growth of national consciousness is a political
I refer you to Uganda. Bobi and Barbi Wine have now arrived in the US.
But what caught my attention was a Video of Revelers at a Tarrus Riley
concert who while chanting ‘People Power’ threw bottles at @BebeCoolUG
while he was on stage performing and later ended his performance.
Inflexion points are difficult to discern but this is one right here.
A Debt crisis and a political inflexion point where those who fought
for Independence hand over to the ''Born Free'' Generation is in fact
a ''double whammy''
BEIJING, Sept. 2 (Xinhua) -- (FOCAC) under the theme of "China and Africa: toward an even stronger community with a shared future through win-win cooperation."
Established in 2000 as an effective mechanism for collective dialogue
and multilateral cooperation between China and Africa, FOCAC functions
as an important framework and platform for building a new type of
partnership featuring long-term stability, equality and mutual
The upcoming Beijing summit on Sept. 3-4 will invite African state
leaders, the chairperson of the African Union as well as UN
secretary-general as the special guest and 27 international and
African groups as observers.
"We believe that with the joint efforts of China and Africa, the
Beijing summit will be a great success and establish a new historical
monument of China-Africa friendly cooperation," Chinese State
Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi said.
Africa seeks China deals that will bring jobs and skills @financialtimes
African leaders will step up their quest for more manufacturing
investment from China next week as they converge on Beijing for a
summit at which both sides will seek to extricate their relationship
from charges of debt and dependency.
The triennial Forum on China Africa Cooperation has in the past been a
catalyst for deepening ties, which a decade ago hinged on Beijing’s
efforts to secure commodities such as oil and copper in return for
infrastructure investment in African nations.
But African governments, partly under pressure from their own
citizens, are planning to use this year’s meeting to push for deals
that create domestic jobs and transfer skills and technology.
“We want a strategic relationship. Not just ‘you build us a bridge and
we’ll give you money’,” said Kamissa Camara, a foreign policy adviser
to Ibrahim Boubacar Keita, Mali’s recently re-elected president.
China’s African push lends it clout in a continent that has a
love-hate relationship with former colonial powers. Dealing with China
can improve an African nation’s bargaining position with Europe, the
US and even other developing countries such as India or Turkey.
“A relationship with China rebalances our unbalanced relationship,”
said Ms Camara. “We hope that when others see China getting involved
in Mali, they too will be interested in investing.”
While Chinese investment in Africa has grown, reaching $2.4bn in 2016,
it is dwarfed by a trade relationship worth $170bn last year.
China became Africa’s largest trading partner in 2009, as Chinese
companies imported more African commodities. Meanwhile, Chinese
manufactured goods make up more than 80 per cent of China’s exports to
Africa. But as demand for commodities slowed, Africa’s trade deficit
with China widened. In 2016, it was equivalent to Africa’s trade
deficit with the rest of the world.
It’s a case of the blind leading the clueless. What would it take to
convince these leaders that Africa’s salvation lies in Africa, not
inside the inner sanctum of the Chinese politburo?
Trains delayed: Ethiopia debt woes curtail China funding
But as the Horn of Africa nation of 100 million people faces debt
distress, there are signs that China, a major creditor, is slowing
financing to Ethiopia as doubts grow over the profitability of some
infrastructure projects there.
“The intensifying repayment risks from the Ethiopian government’s debt
reaching 59 percent of GDP is worrying investors,” China’s mission to
the African Union in Addis Ababa said on its website in July.
It said that Chinese investment in Ethiopia country was cooling and
that the China Export and Credit Insurance Corp was reducing the scale
of its investment there.
Against a backdrop of rising worry over African indebtedness to China,
Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed will visit Beijing for the Forum on
China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC), which starts on Monday.
Ethiopia has been a top destination for Chinese loans in Africa,
despite its lack of natural resources, with state policy banks
extending it more than $12.1 billion since 2000, according to the
China Africa Research Initiative (CARI) at the Johns Hopkins School of
Advanced International Studies in Washington (SAIS).
"This is a kamikaze mission!" @theintercept's @nickturse
GUNSHOTS RING OUT as the troops advance down a dirt road. One of them,
in full combat gear — helmet, camouflage uniform, automatic weapon —
clowns for the camera and sticks out his tongue. A sergeant next to
him says, in French, “This is a kamikaze mission!”
It quickly becomes clear exactly what type of mission this actually
is. It’s of the same type that soldiers carried out at El Mozote, El
Salvador, in 1981, at My Lai, South Vietnam, in 1968, and at
Oradour-sur-Glane, France, in 1944. It is a massacre. And it is
filmed. This particular mass killing takes place in Cameroon, a key
U.S. ally and staging ground for America’s drone operations in Africa.
While the number of victims is likely smaller than other notorious
mass killings, it’s the second atrocity video involving Cameroon’s
armed forces to be made public this summer.
“Lay down, lay down. Put your head there,” a soldier shouts at about
12 unresisting people who are seated or lying on the ground. Around
the one minute and 44-second mark in the footage, troops aim at the
group and fire with their assault rifles for an extended period of
“There are some who are not dead,” says one of the soldiers when the
shooting subsides. “The dudes still move. They move,” says another.
A soldier then walks forward and fires at close range. Bodies jerk
from the impact of the bullets. A voice then calls out, “It’s not us.
It’s Yaounde” — the capital of the country, and an apparent reference
to the national government.
“This shocking video shows armed men lining people up face down or
sitting against a wall and shooting them with automatic weapons,”said
Ilaria Allegrozzi, Amnesty International’s Lake Chad researcher. “A
second round of shooting ensures no survivors. Here is yet more
credible evidence to support the allegations that Cameroon’s armed
forces have committed grave crimes against civilians, and we are
calling for an immediate, thorough, and impartial investigation. Those
suspected to be responsible for these abhorrent acts must be brought
Other news organizations have released censored versions of the video
that do not show the killings. The Intercept is publishing a version
that includes the massacre, and has an English translation. With the
U.S. government — which has close ties with Cameroon’s armed forces
and operates a drone base in the north of the country — offering
little indication that it is seriously investigating the atrocity or
reconsidering its military aid to the country, it is in the public
interest to make the uncensored footage available.
An investigation by Amnesty International, using digital analysis of
the video footage that began circulating online, found that the mass
killing of at least a dozen unarmed people took place during a
Cameroonian military operation in the village of Achigachiya in the
Far North region sometime prior to May 2016. An earlier Amnesty
International report documented the extrajudicial executions of at
least 30 civilians, including many elderly people, in the same village
in January 2015. Local sources say as many as 88 people were killed.
While much remains uncertain, the Cameroonian military operation in
Achigachiya was apparently part of a mission to recover the bodies of
fellow soldiers killed when Boko Haram militants overran a nearby
Cameroonian military base in late December 2014. The attack on
civilians was likely an act of retribution for perceived local
assistance to the insurgents. The video appears to be footage of that
An Islamist insurgent group with roots in Nigeria, Boko Haram has
waged a campaign of violence that spilled across the borders of
several Lake Chad Basin countries, including Cameroon. Known for
attacks on schools, the burning of villages, and large-scale
abductions — including nearly 300 schoolgirls from the town of Chibok
on April 14, 2014 — Boko Haram’s brutality has led to ruthless
responses from local militaries against suspected supporters, and even
civilian victims, of the group.
According to Allegrozzi of Amnesty, “Crimes caught on camera are just
the tip of the iceberg; they are part of a system where abuses are
routine, where they are the rule not the exception. This culture of
impunity seems to reflect the belief that annihilating suspected
insurgents — whether Boko Haram or armed separatists — and terrorizing
civilian populations is the way to re-establish security in various
parts of the country. This strategy is not only unlawful, it’s also
failing, as evidenced by the continually degrading security
environment in the country, from the Far North to the North and
For nearly one year, AFRICOM has ignored periodic requests from The
Intercept seeking comment about the parameters, scope, and findings of
its probe, which was headed by Brig. Gen. Timothy McAteer and
concluded in November 2017.
“We believe that the AFRICOM investigation should be made public,”
said Allegrozzi. “The report must be publicly released, not only to
find out if any U.S. military personnel were aware of incommunicado
detention and torture, but also to convey to the Cameroonian
authorities how seriously the United States takes this issue.”
Between 2015 and 2018, the U.S. authorized roughly $200 million in
security aid for Cameroon, including $108 million earmarked for
counterterrorism. “Cameroon is one of the top six recipients in
sub-Saharan Africa and in the top three for West Africa, so they are
one of the key U.S. counterterrorism partners in sub-Saharan Africa,”
Colby Goodman, director of the Security Assistance Monitor, which
analyzes U.S. foreign military aid, told The Intercept.
MTN May Get Naira Refund by Paying $8.1 Billion Nigeria Demands
MTN Group Ltd. may receive a naira-denominated refund if Africa’s
biggest wireless carrier returns the $8.1 billion that Nigeria says
was illegally taken out of the country.
The South African phone company must bring back the cash after it and
three banks “flagrantly violated foreign-exchange violations,” Nigeria
Central Bank Deputy Governor Joseph Nnanna said by text message
Sunday, reiterating a Wednesday order. The lenders have been hit with
a combined $16 million fine for their role in the transactions, which
happened over eight years through 2015.
News of a potential like-for-like naira refund answers one of the
outstanding questions arising from last week’s bombshell, when the
reserve bank handed down the order to the country’s biggest
mobile-phone company. How and when MTN should pay the money and what
happens if the company doesn’t comply remain unanswered. MTN refutes
MTN’s share price ended the week 17 percent lower in the wake of the
turmoil, leaving the stock close to nine-month lows. The news came
almost three years after Nigeria hit the carrier with a $5.2 billion
fine -- later reduced to about $1 billion -- in an entirely separate
dispute over SIM-card registration. That incident also weighed heavily
on the share price.
ARM Cement reports H1 2018 EPS [4.85] Earnings here
Par Value: 5/-
Closing Price: 5.55
Total Shares Issued: 959940200.00
Market Capitalization: 5,327,668,110
A mineral extraction and processing company which manufactures lime,
cement and other industrial fertilisers.
ARM Cement PLC H1 2018 results through 30th June 2018 vs. 30th June 2017
H1 Revenue 2.351622b vs. 5.347487b -56.024%
H1 [Loss]/ Profit before tax [2.502971b] vs. [1.379980b] -81.377%
H1 [Loss]/ Profit after tax [2.326975b] vs. [1.413541b] -64.620%
H1 Total comprehensive [Loss]/ income for the year [2.326975b] vs.
H1 [Loss]/ Earnings per share [4.85] vs. [3.30] -46.970%
Total Assets 40.806869b vs. 42.699067b -4.431%
Total Equity 19.055374b vs. 20.815524b -8.456%
Cash and cash equivalents at end of period 180.155m vs. 113.403m +58.863%
Home Afrika reports H1 2018 EPS -9.091% Earnings here
Closing Price: 0.75
Total Shares Issued: 405255320.00
Market Capitalization: 303,941,490
Home Afrika Limited H1 2018 results through 30th June 2018 vs. 30th June 2017
H1 Revenue 106.718m vs. 92.474m +15.403%
H1 Cost of sales [69.776m] vs. [75.274m] -7.304%
H1 Gross profit/ [loss] 36.942m vs. 17.200m +114.779%
H1 Other operating income 3.925m vs. 7.638m -48.612%
H1 Other [loss] [84.917m] vs. [82.676m] -2.711%
H1 [Loss] before tax [138.431m] vs. [130.266m] -6.268%
H1 [Loss] for the period [111.603m] vs. [102.919m] -8.438%
H1 [Loss] per share [0.24] vs. [0.22] -9.091%
Total Equity [505.090m]
Cash and cash equivalents at the end of the period 11.591m
Every African Head of State and his core Team have trooped off to
China to make ''win-win'' music with Xi Jinping and his FOCAC gig.
According to Carlos Lopez ''Xi Jinping announces 8 new initiatives, an
additional $60 billion for Africa and a clean up of the debt maturing
by this year of its LDCs, highly indebted, landlocked and Small
According to latest reports ''MTN Group Ltd. may receive a
naira-denominated refund if Africa’s biggest wireless carrier returns
the $8.1 billion that Nigeria says was illegally taken out of the
Here in Kenya everyone is closely watching the Fall-Out from the VAT
imposition on Fuel.
On a YTD basis, the shilling has gained by 2.5% against the US Dollar
making it one of the best performing currencies in the World in 2018.
Improving Diaspora Remittances which increased by 4.9% to USD 266.2 mn
in June 2018, from USD 253.7 mn in May 2018, with the bulk
contribution coming from North America at USD 122.8 mn [Cytonn] has
been underpinning the Shilling.
During the month of August, the @NSE_PLC equities market was on a
downward trend with NASI, NSE 20 and NSE 25 declining by 1.7%, 2.8%
and 3.2% @CytonnInvest
The market is currently trading at a price to earnings ratio (P/E) of
13.9x and a dividend yield of 3.9%.
The Nairobi Securities All Share retreated -1.67 points to close vat v165.92.
The NSE20 retreated -25.16 points to close 3178.24
N.S.E Equities - Commercial & Services
Safaricom traded ex-dividend today and that coupled with a Report via
Reuters that Safaricom faces a fine of 0.2 per cent of its gross
revenue for the last financial year, equivalent to Sh449 million
($4.47 million), documents from the regulator reviewed by Reuters
showed brought downside price action to the share today which closed
-1.77% at 27.75 and traded 1.732m. You would be forgiven for thinking
that The Regulator's raison d'être is to penalise success and favour
Failure a reverse Darwinism, as it were.
These proposals are not forward-looking. We believe the focus should
be on finding opportunities to enable all operators serve customers
better, rather than reversing the gains of one operator” @SafaricomPLC
LongHorn Kenya reported a +36.375% acceleration in FY 2018 Earnings
per Share, a +16.844% FY Revenue Gain and raised the Dividend Pay-Out
+10.526%. LongHorn improved its Cash and Cash Equivalents position
+3,497% to end the Year with 418.78m on hand. In the accompanying
commentary, LongHorn spoken to product diversification, entry into new
markets and growth of the digital offering as all contributing to
these promising Full Year results. Operating margin expanded from 16%
to 21% and LongHorn spoke to its intention to ''new territories within
Southern Africa and Francophone territories'' These were good results
and LongHorn is a beneficiary surely of the ''demographic dividend''
LongHorn surged +10.00% to close at 4.95 and traded 26,000 shares.
N.S.E Equities - Finance & Investment
The Failure to substantively modify the rate cap has brought some sell
side pressure of late on the Banking counters.
KCB Group closed unchanged at 45.00 and was heavily traded with 4.875m
shares worth 219.752m changing hands.
Equity Bank closed unchanged at 44.50 and traded 2.896m shares worth 129.137m.
N.S.E Equities - Industrial & Allied
KenGen closed unchanged at 6.60 and traded just 24,000 shares. Buyers
outpace Sellers by a Factor of 3 to 1 and volumes thinning out signals
Seller exhaustion at these price points.