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Satchu's Rich Wrap-Up
 
 
Monday 15th of October 2018
 
Morning,
Africa

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Because one of the lawyers has been declared persona non grata (PNG) by the Ugandan regime, part of our legal team strategy meeting had to be held in Nairobi, Kenya @nickopiyo
Africa


Because one of the lawyers has been declared persona non grata (PNG)
by the Ugandan regime, part of our legal team strategy meeting had to
be held in Nairobi, Kenya. Defending rights has a huge cost we must
all pay @HEBobiwine @karamagi_andrew @bobamsterdam

read more






Brent and WTI crude #oil open 1.5% higher after #SaudiArabia threats @JavierBlas
Africa


Brent and WTI crude #oil open 1.5% higher after #SaudiArabia threats
(which highlighted its "vital" role in the global economy, which many
read as an oblique reference to oil). #OOTT

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One can gasp at the implications of the density parameter (omega), which one second after the big bang could not have varied from unity by more than one part in a million billion
Africa


One can gasp at the implications of the density parameter Ω (omega),
which one second after the big bang could not have varied from unity
by more than one part in a million billion or the universe would not
still be expanding, 13.7bn years on. Just Six Numbers: Martin Rees

read more


One can marvel at balance between nuclear forces & astoundingly feeble but ultimately inexorable power of gravity, giving us N a huge number involving 36 zeroes
Africa


One can marvel at balance between nuclear forces & astoundingly feeble
but ultimately inexorable power of gravity, giving us N a huge number
involving 36 zeroes, & nod gratefully each time one is told that were
gravity not almost exactly 1036 times weaker then we wouldn't be here

read more


Einstein's supposed "biggest blunder", the cosmological constant; lambda, is a number not only smaller than first expected; it is a number so small that the puzzle is that it is not zero
Africa


Einstein's supposed "biggest blunder", the cosmological constant λ for
lambda, is a number not only smaller than first expected; it is a
number so small that the puzzle is that it is not zero. Just Six
Numbers: The Deep Forces that Shape the Universe by Martin Rees

it is a number so small that the puzzle is that it is not zero. But
this weakest and most mysterious of forces – think of a value with 120
zeroes after the decimal point – seems to dictate the whole future of
the universe.think of a value with 120 zeroes after the decimal point
– seems to dictate the whole future of the universe. It seems just
strong enough to push the most distant galaxies away from us at an
unexpected rate. Were it much stronger, there might be no galaxies to
accelerate anywhere

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Corporate and governmental short-termism and self-interest are the enemies of the planet, he declares, and so is a "public [which is] still in denial". Sir Martin Rees. @FinancialTimes
Africa


western eating habits, are destined to approach tipping points before
the half-century. He cites 1,500 litres of water to grow 1kg of wheat;
but 10 times as much water, and 20 times as much energy, to provide a
kilogramme of beef.

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"Piglet was sitting on the ground at the door of his house blowing happily at a dandelion, and wondering whether it would be this year, next year, sometime, or never. then tried to remember what 'it' was..."~A.A.Milne
Africa


"Piglet was sitting on the ground at the door of his house blowing
happily at a dandelion, and wondering whether it would be this year,
next year, sometime, or never. He discovered that it would be never,
and then tried to remember what 'it' was..."~A.A.Milne

read more



War is coming
Law & Politics


I recall President Obama describing the Presidency thus. He said it
was like being a Train Driver. The Rails are laid and the direction
set and the President can speed up or slow down but nothing more. In
Dec 2013, I wrote a Piece headlined ''The Pivot to Asia bares its
Fangs'' in which article I said

''I see the pivot to Asia as the encirclement of China, then the
shrinking of its operating theatre and then lighting the tinderbox
that is the periphery and Xinjiang might well morph into China’s
Afghanistan'' [China has been stuffing the residents of Xinjiang with
Pork, locking them up in internment camps and brainwashing them in
order to prevent that outcome].

The Pivot to Asia was the signature name for President Obama's pivot,
which entailed a repositioning of US Assets into Asia and which China
saw as a US attempt to contain it and bottle it up. If one is to
criticise Barack Obama one would criticise him for being incredibly
supine in the teeth of China's ''salami slicing'' [Ronak Gopaldas in
the ISS].

''The practice involves the slow accumulation of small changes, ‘none
of which in isolation amounts to a casus belli, but which add up over
time to a substantial change in the strategic picture,’ according to
military analyst Robert Haddick. This incremental strategy has been
employed with considerable success for territorial gains in the South
China sea''

In August 2017, I wrote a piece headlined ''China Rising'' and said
''Apart from a few half-hearted and timid FONOPs [freedom of
navigation operations], China has established control over the South
China Sea. It has created artificial Islands and then militarised
those artificial islands across the South China Sea. It is a
mind-boggling geopolitical advance any which way you care to cut it''

By March 2018 in a Shakespeare level moment of hubris, Xinhua
pronounced this historical announcement; the Central Committee of the
Communist Party of China “proposed to remove the expression that ‘the
president and vice-president of the People’s Republic of China shall
serve no more than two consecutive terms’ from the country’s
constitution.” In one fell swoop, President Xi Jinping was President
for Life. That was the Apogee.

By July 2018 Trump had launched his Tariff War which I characterised thus

26 Jul 2018 The method in his madness is the triangulation of China
and a serious ratcheting higher of pressure. Xi is looking more
brittle.

President Trump after bashing on Justin Trudeau of Canada and Mexico’s
Enrique Peña Nieto [now upended, of course] and then firing a few
broadsides at Europe, has now turned his attention to Xi Jinping and
thrown him the Keys challenging him to a “Chickie Run.” and also sent
two US destroyers into the Taiwan strait for the first time since
2007.

It has now turned out that for all the Trump bluster. when it comes to
Trade the likes of the US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, and
Peter Navarro, head of a trade policy shop in the White House have
been with surgical precision and have introduced an  "anti-dragon
clause," which prevents any country with a free trade agreement with
the U.S. from seeking free trade with "nonmarket economies (China)
without American consent. The so-called "anti-dragon clause," which
prevents any country with a free trade agreement with the U.S. from
seeking free trade with "nonmarket economies (China) without American
consent, is designed by Washington's trade hawks as a template for
future negotiations with key economies (such as EU, U.K. and Japan)
and as a weapon to isolate China. Chinese leaders can be forgiven for
seething about this declaration of economic warfare. [Asia Nikkei] I
have said severally that Trump who remains a linguistic warfare
Specialist has proven a skilled coercive sanction warfare Specialist.

"Trump's aggressive coercive foreign economic policy is the signature
success of this administration. It is highly effective — look at
Venezuela to see its most extreme output. Iran is in a similar bind.
China is in retreat notwithstanding some bravura talk. Trump can keep
it up. It's working a treat," Mr. Satchu told Sputnik. [September
2018]

On Trade Trump is disrupting the Chinese Supply Chain bigly.  The FT
said ''The Trump administration’s new strategic thrust is more
aspirational than operational. But its tariffs on $250bn-worth of
Chinese imports, tightening of rules on Chinese investments in the US,
screening of supply chains for national security vulnerabilities, and
boost of military spending by $82bn are indicators of what is to
come'' I think the FT is mistaken in its characterisation that it is
more ''aspirational than operational.''

In Geopolitical terms, Vice President Pence set out the
Administration's stall in a speech at the Hudson Institute. SCMP news
said

''Vice-president Mike Pence’s speech at the Hudson Institute on
October 4 was an era-defining statement in the history of diplomacy
between the United States and China. It declared a fundamental US
policy shift and set a new course for the relationship between the
world’s two largest economies and chief political adversaries,
something not seen since US president Richard Nixon’s trip to China in
1972. Historians might wish to compare Pence’s 45-minute policy
statement with such historic episodes as George Kennan’s 8,000-word
telegram in 1946, Winston Churchill’s “iron curtain” speech of 1946,
and Harry Truman’s “Truman Doctrine” address to Congress in 1947, all
of which underpinned the West’s cold war policy of containment toward
the communist bloc led by the then-Soviet Union''

The importance of the Speech cannot be gainsaid. ''This geopolitical
contest will likely escalate dangerously. Powerful forces on both
sides are driving the world's two strongest countries toward
full-fledged confrontation'' [The writer is the Douglas Dillon
professor of government at the Harvard Kennedy School and author of
‘Destined for War’ in the FT] As a candidate, Donald Trump complained
that China was “raping” America. After months of smaller steps, his
administration has now pledged to fight back hard on all fronts — and
win.

The US military is reportedly planning to send US warships, combat
aircraft, and troops through the South China Sea, Taiwan Strait, and
other contested waterways next month in a series of exercises designed
to send a message to Beijing in November. The incident with the USS
Decatur where a Chinese warship came within 45 yards of the USS
Decatur in South China Sea is surely a precursor. B-52s are buzzing
China practically daily.

@GregDjerejian responded thus to a question I posed about how best to
position oneself in the context of the financial markets

''I am frankly concerned well beyond sketching out market positioning
but to your point one might start with shying away from names that too
robustly rely on heavily commingled Trans-Pacific supply chains & the
like?''

Lets start with Gold which popped last week to close at 1218.15. The
purest geopolitical proxy in the markets is Gold. As Ben Bernanke once
said People hold gold “As protection against what we call tail risks:
really, really bad outcomes.”

I like the Dollar. And every time I hear another Fellow talking about
the demise of the Dollar, with that 3 am Ministry of Sound [circa
1990s] look in their eye I want to buy more. The Yen also has started
strengthening. I am keen to buy the China-EM negative Feedback
Contagion Loop which means shorting the ZAR [into this Tito Mboweni
bounce - I have a high regard for this Man but many of you might have
forgotten the reaction when he was first appointed Central Bank
Governor] for example. Equities will stay under pressure and wobbled
last week. With respect to Commodities, I think its best we sell that
as well ex Oil. Crude Oil is battling a very precarious Geopolitical
situation with the biggest supplier of Crude Oil to the World markets,
the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia signalling loud and clear that its wannabe
King is simply not tenable, he was already unconscionable I know. If
You really absolutely must hold some EM exposure, then you should look
at the Turkish Lira where it seems Maybe just maybe President Erdogan
has sharpened his skills and flipped  the “Control the yield curve,
decide the future” Trade on its head and boomeranged it with the
release of Pastor Brunson and leveraging the extraordinary events in a
Saudi Consulate in Istanbul.

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FIGHTING TALK: IT'S WASHINGTON VS BEIJING AFTER US @VP MIKE PENCE'S CHINA SPEECH @SCMPNews
Law & Politics


Vice-president Mike Pence’s speech at the Hudson Institute on October
4 was an era-defining statement in the history of diplomacy between
the United States and China. It declared a fundamental US policy shift
and set a new course for the relationship between the world’s two
largest economies and chief political adversaries, something not seen
since US president Richard Nixon’s trip to China in 1972.

Historians might wish to compare Pence’s 45-minute policy statement
with such historic episodes as George Kennan’s 8,000-word telegram in
1946, Winston Churchill’s “iron curtain” speech of 1946, and Harry
Truman’s “Truman Doctrine” address to Congress in 1947, all of which
underpinned the West’s cold war policy of containment toward the
communist bloc led by the then-Soviet Union.

In his speech, Pence said “previous administrations’ hope that freedom
in China would expand … has all gone unfulfilled” because “Beijing has
instead chosen the path of authoritarianism, mercantilism and
aggression”. His remarks reflect a strong bipartisan consensus on the
need to get tough on China. For instance, recent anti-China bills,
whether about trade, defence, Taiwan or Xinjiang, have all received
overwhelming bipartisan support in both the Senate and House of
Representatives.

The speech marked a fundamental change in US policy since Nixon of
“engagement” with China to a strategy of “disengagement” or
“containment”, as championed by anti-communist hawks such as
Churchill, Truman, McCarthy and Kennan decades ago.

read more


The so-called "anti-dragon clause," which prevents any country with a free trade agreement with the U.S. from seeking free trade with "nonmarket economies (China) without American consent @NAR
Law & Politics


Any hope that the U.S. and China will hit "pause" in their rapidly
deteriorating ties was dashed by the rare open display of mutual
antipathy during Mike Pompeo's brief visit to Beijing, the shortest on
record by an American secretary of state, on Oct. 8. Instead of
patching up a relationship in free fall, the occasion turned into an
acrimonious exchange of accusations.

Pompeo's visit occurred at an inauspicious moment. Four days before he
landed in Beijing, American Vice President Mike Pence delivered a
speech on China that is so harsh that it was seen as a turning point.
Commenters, both in China and the West, even labeled it America's
official declaration of a cold war with China.

Chinese leaders must also have been angered by the new NAFTA agreement
(officially the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, or USMCA) signed on
Sept. 30. At Washington's insistence, it effectively gives the U.S. a
veto over future free deals Canada and Mexico may want to reach with
China.

The so-called "anti-dragon clause," which prevents any country with a
free trade agreement with the U.S. from seeking free trade with
"nonmarket economies (China) without American consent, is designed by
Washington's trade hawks as a template for future negotiations with
key economies (such as EU, U.K. and Japan) and as a weapon to isolate
China. Chinese leaders can be forgiven for seething about this
declaration of economic warfare.

This geopolitical contest will likely escalate dangerously. Powerful
forces on both sides are driving the world's two strongest countries
toward full-fledged confrontation.

On the American side, Trump's hard-line China policy enjoys wide
support from a bipartisan coalition encompassing the security
establishment, trade hawks, human rights groups, and white
nationalists.

Although this coalition's members are divided on other issues, on
China they agree on these propositions: Washington's engagement policy
with China over the last four decades has been a failure; China's rise
under one-party rule constitutes a structural threat to U.S. global
leadership, and America must contain China before it is too late. To
be sure, there may be differences over tactics. But there should be no
doubt about the thrust of the coalition's preferred policy.

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09-JUL-2018 :: Tariff wars, who blinks first?
Law & Politics



President Trump after bashing on Justin Trudeau of Canada and Mexico’s
Enrique Peña Nieto [now upended, of course] and then firing a few
broadsides at Europe, has now turned his attention to Xi Jinping and
thrown him the Keys challenging him to a “Chickie Run.”

James Dean was an iconic American actor, who tapped into the universal
yearning and angst of nearly every adolescent human be- ing with a raw
connection that has surely not been surpassed since. In one of his
most consequential films, Rebel without a Cause, two players (read,
teenage boys) decide to settle a dispute (read, teenage girl) by way
of near-death experiences. Each speeds an automobile towards a cliff.
A simple rule governs the challenge: the first to jump out of his
automo- bile is the chicken and, by univer- sally accepted social
convention, concedes the object in dispute. The second to jump is
victorious, and, depending on context, becomes gang leader, prom king,
etc. Jimmie (James Dean), to settle a dispute (read, teenage girl)
with Buzz, the leader of a local gang, agrees to a “Chickie Run.” Both
race stolen cars towards the edge of a cliff. The first to eject out
of his car is branded a “chickie.” Seconds into the race, Buzz
discovers that his jacket is stuck on the door handle, making jumping
out of the car so- mewhat difficult. Jimmie jumps out an instant
before the cars reach the edge of the cliff. Buzz, still unable to
free his jacket from the door handle, fails to escape. While he won’t
be branded a “chickie,” he suffers a worse fate.

President Trump after bashing on Justin Trudeau of Canada and Mexico’s
Enrique Peña Nieto [now upended, of course] and then firing a few
broadsides at Europe, has now turned his attention to Xi Jinping and
thrown him the Keys challenging him to a “Chickie Run.” and also sent
two US destroyers into the Taiwan strait for the first time since
2007.

read more


02-DEC-2013 The Pivot to Asia bares its Fangs
Law & Politics


I see the pivot to Asia as the encirclement of China, then the
shrinking of its operating theatre and then lighting the tinderbox
that is the periphery and Xinjiang might well morph into China’s
Afghanistan.

read more


The US is hunkering down for a new cold war with China @FinancialTimes
Law & Politics


As a candidate, Donald Trump complained that China was “raping”
America. After months of smaller steps, his administration has now
pledged to fight back hard on all fronts — and win.

Mr Pence’s big idea is that US presidents Bill Clinton, George W Bush
and Barack Obama fundamentally misunderstood the China challenge. The
nation they embraced as a “strategic partner” is in fact a “strategic
competitor”, “rival”, indeed “adversary”. Previous administrations
made a cosmic bet. They wagered that integrating China into the US-led
international order would lead it to develop a normal free market
economy, democracy, the rule of law guaranteeing human rights, and
acceptance of its place as a “responsible stakeholder”. They lost that
bet — and the Trump administration is left to deal with the
consequences.

As Mr Trump said in August: “When I came we were heading in a certain
direction that was going to allow China to be bigger than us in a very
short period of time. That’s not going to happen any more.”

China is conducting a “whole of government” assault on the US by every
means short of bombs and bullets.

The Trump administration’s new strategic thrust is more aspirational
than operational. But its tariffs on $250bn-worth of Chinese imports,
tightening of rules on Chinese investments in the US, screening of
supply chains for national security vulnerabilities, and boost of
military spending by $82bn are indicators of what is to come.

A high-level Chinese official told me this week that his country is
“flummoxed” by the Pence speech. The possibility of a new cold war has
sent Chinese strategists back to reading the ancient Greek historian
Thucydides. He argued the origins of the Peloponnesian war lay in the
“fear” the rise of Athens instilled in nearby Sparta.

We should be worried, too.

The writer is the Douglas Dillon professor of government at the
Harvard Kennedy School and author of ‘Destined for War’

read more


Saudi Arabia: a kingdom in the dock @FT
Law & Politics


“He didn’t want to go,” Ms Cengiz says. “He was nervous that something
could happen.”

The 33-year-old royal has courted western leaders and international
investors with promises of reforming his country. And he is due to
host a conference in Riyadh later this month dubbed “Davos in the
desert”.

The arrest over the past year of princes, clerics, critics, business
figures and female activists barely registered. But the shock at the
alleged murder has crystallised investor concerns about the real
direction of the crown prince’s programme at a time when the kingdom
has delayed the initial public offering of Saudi Aramco and borrowed
$11bn from global banks.

“[It is] yet another self-created problem,” says a senior fund manager
due to attend the conference. “It will be added to the questions about
why to invest in Saudi.”

But that night, the story took a darker turn. A government official
briefed international media that Turkish authorities believed Mr
Khashoggi had been killed in a “premeditated” attack, adding that
police believed his body had been dismembered and taken out of the
building in diplomatic bags. Later, leaked CCTV images showed frenetic
activity outside the consulate, with cars and vans coming and going,
on the day of Mr Khashoggi’s visit.

Almost two weeks since he was last seen alive, there is still no sign
of Mr Khashoggi. Asked whether Saudi Arabia would really kidnap or
kill a dissident in Turkey’s biggest city, Ms Cengiz says her fiancé
had asked the same question on the day he disappeared but felt
reassured enough to go to the consulate. “He said: ‘Saudi can’t do
something like that in Turkey’,” she says.

read more



13-NOV-2017 :: The existential paranoia in the head of 32-year-old wannabe King is evidenced
Law & Politics


 “How can I communicate with them while they prepare for the arrival
of al-Mahdi al-Montazar?”

read more


Shah of Shahs (Penguin Modern Classics) by Ryszard Kapuscinski
Law & Politics


‘’Oil kindles extraordinary emotions and hopes, since oil is above all
a great temptation. It is the temptation of ease, wealth, strength,
fortune, power. It is a filthy, foul-smelling liquid that squirts
obligingly up into the air and falls back to earth as a rustling
shower of money.''

read more


If US sanctions are imposed on Saudi Arabia, we will be facing an economic disaster that would rock the entire world. @AlArabiya_Eng
Law & Politics


If US sanctions are imposed on Saudi Arabia, we will be facing an
economic disaster that would rock the entire world. Riyadh is the
capital of its oil, and touching this would affect oil production
before any other vital commodity. It would lead to Saudi Arabia's
failure to commit to producing 7.5 million barrels. If the price of
oil reaching $80 angered President Trump, no one should rule out the
price jumping to $100, or $200, or even double that figure.

read more





The approach to the murder of the journo by Saudi Barbaria (if details are true) illustrates the conflation the sophisticated w/what looks sophisticated. @nntaleb
Law & Politics


The most sophisticated approach wd have been to use a cheap hitman on
a motorcycle.

Saudis acted like academic economists.

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Currency Markets at a Glance WSJ
World Currencies


Euro 1.1547
Dollar Index 95.23
Japan Yen 112.09
Swiss Franc 0.9907
Pound 1.3106
Aussie 0.7104
India Rupee 73.77
South Korea Won 1133.91
Brazil Real 3.7830
Egypt Pound 17.9515
South Africa Rand 14.5197

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"The bottom billion". Their predicament is invidious. Sir Martin Rees. @FinancialTimes
Africa


‘’the bottom billion”. Their predicament is invidious. They have
mobile phones, social media, but no proper toilets and clean water. So
“ . . . these same technologies mean that those in deprived parts of
the world are aware of what they are missing”

read more




Mthuli Ncube, Zimbabwe's finance minister:' I don't want to argue with the market' Reuters
Africa


Zimbabwe is in the grip of a new economic crisis as the value of the
country’s local currency collapses and shop shelves are stripped bare
after a panic-buying spree last week.
Attempts to resolve the country’s complex currency system — in which
non-dollar-backed electronic money and local “bond notes” are rapidly
losing value — have been undermined by mixed messages from the
government. The latest crisis is reviving memories of hyperinflation
and undermining the new administration’s message that the country is
“open for business”.
Amid a desperate shortage of dollars, even local KFC outlets were
forced to shut up shop, unable to access the funds to buy chicken.
The problems began this month when Mthuli Ncube, Zimbabwe’s finance
minister, said he was dividing bank accounts into two types — ones
containing “good” and “bad” dollars. The “good” accounts are those
backed by real inflows of dollars, remitted by millions of Zimbabweans
in the diaspora. The “bad” accounts are those holding electronic
money, known as RTGS, or real-time gross settlement.
Zimbabwe has been a dollarised economy for almost a decade since the
government scrapped the local currency after a hyperinflationary
meltdown.
Zimbabweans have lost faith in two surrogate currencies that circulate
alongside dollars. These are the “bond notes”, introduced in 2016 and
supposedly backed by real dollars, and the electronic money with which
people pay for things in the absence of physical notes.
In reality, neither trade at anything like parity. Last week, bond
notes were worth as little as 20 cents on the dollar.
Mr Ncube has won praise for admitting that the root cause is
unsustainable government borrowing that has effectively entailed
printing billions of electronic dollars without real-world backing.
But the finance ministry’s attempt to end the parallel currency system
triggered rumours that the administration was preparing to wipe out
savings through a savage devaluation.
Last week in London, Mr Ncube appeared to confirm that by admitting:
“The market has said these currencies are not at par. I don’t want to
argue with the market. The bond notes will, at some point, have to be
demonetised.”
Two days later, as panic spread, Mr Ncube — by this time in Bali for
the IMF’s annual meetings — backtracked. The government, he announced,
would honour the parity of RTGS balances with dollars, after obtaining
a financial guarantee from Afreximbank, a Cairo-based lender. In a
tweet, he said. “Afreximbank has offered Zimbabwe a facility to
guarantee 1:1 Convertibility of RTGS balances into US$.” Afreximbank
could not be reached for comment.
The brewing sense of crisis has negated efforts by the new
administration of President Emmerson Mnangagwa to normalise the
economy and repair relations with multilateral institutions. Harare
has been in arrears with the IMF since 2001.
The appointment last month of Mr Ncube, a visiting professor at Oxford
university and a former chief economist with the African Development
Bank, had been intended to reassure international investors that
Zimbabwe was serious about reform. But doubts persist about whether he
enjoys the full backing of the government.
At the FT Africa Summit in London last week, Mr Ncube outlined his
plans, declaring that the “winds of change” were blowing in Zimbabwe.
Among planned reforms, he said, the government was ready to scrap
controversial “indigenisation” laws requiring local ownership of
platinum and diamond mines.
The new finance minister denied suggestions that Mr Mnangagwa’s
administration was a military government in disguise. “I am a
civilian; I am leading the reforms,” he said.
But back at home, Zimbabweans were reeling from the dollar shortage
and protesting against a new 2 per cent tax Mr Ncube has levied on
electronic payments, a measure he said was necessary to close the
yawning fiscal deficit.
Tendai Biti, an opposition leader, told the BBC that the new finance
minister would not be able to fix an economic crisis born of years of
reckless mismanagement. “You can rig an election, but you cannot rig
an economy,” he said.
President Mnangagwa has presented the latest crisis as an inevitable
consequence of reform. “The liberalisation of the economy has its
pains, and this is one of the pains that we are going to go through,”
he said.
Yet so acute are fears of a gathering storm that, despite Mr Ncube’s
assurances, some Zimbabweans doubt even their “good” dollar accounts
will be safe indefinitely.
John Robertson, a local economist, said the Zimbabwean state had wiped
out savings before, a reference to the hyperinflation of 2007 and
2008. “This cost people so much that trust in government
pronouncements no longer exists''

read more


08-OCT-2018 :: One Domino that has suddenly tipped over is Zimbabwe
Africa


Reuters reported that People again formed long queues to fill up their
cars in the capital, with others panic-buying basic goods like cooking
oil and sugar.
There are $9.3 billion of Zollars in banks compared to $200 million in
reserves, official data showed, a mis- match that creates a premium
for the U.S. dollar and fans the black market.
On the black market, the premium for the U.S. dollar spiked to a new
record on Saturday, reaching 165 percent from 120 percent on Monday,
traders said that means buying $100 in cash via a bank transfer cost
$265, up from $220 earlier this week.
The Government’s ‘’Voodoo Economics’’ where it spent $1.3b
pump-priming the economy ahead of the election [money it did not have]
was the straw that broke the camel’s back.

read more


The chaotic autumn of an African patriarch @FT
Africa


Cameroon is the great unspoken African tragedy in-the-making. Its
president, Paul Biya, has been in power since 1982. If ever a country
needed presidential term limits it is this one. Mr Biya is now the
second longest serving non-monarchic head of state in the world. If,
as expected, he manoeuvres his way through ongoing post-election
turmoil to secure another seven-year stint, he will be 92 by the time
the next polls fall due, just one year younger than Robert Mugabe when
he was overthrown last year.

When he first became head of state, his country had a highly educated
population and diversified economy every bit as promising as
Zimbabwe’s once was. His rule has been a slow-burning disaster ever
since, characterised by grand-scale corruption, political repression
and growing division.

With every passing year, the likelihood of a tragic denouement to his
presidency has risen. Last Sunday’s elections took place to a backdrop
of simmering conflict in the north of the country, where the army is
fighting Islamist militants from the Boko Haram cult. In the
north-west and south-west of the country, separatists from the
English-speaking minority are waging a guerrilla war.

These upheavals should be gaining far more attention — both on the
continent and further afield. The unravelling of this religiously
divided and multi-ethnic country has the potential to destabilise
swaths of central and west Africa — it is the bridge between the two.
The unleashing of the country’s enormous economic potential, would by
contrast, provide a boon to the whole region. Yet, there has been a
near complete absence of international engagement. Rather than
leveraging their influence to nudge Mr Biya to the door, successive
French governments have served as his protector. If this was
short-sighted a quarter century ago, when the seeds of today’s crisis
were sown, it is even more so now.

Last Sunday’s election might have offered that chance for political
renewal. Instead the outcome looks likely to further polarise the
country.

Cameroon has been divided along linguistic lines since 1961 when
colonial-era French and British-administered territories were brought
together in a federation after a referendum. The unification of the
two parts in a hyper-centralised state 11 years later has been a bone
of contention for anglophones, who make up a fifth of the population,
ever since. Their frustrations boiled over two years ago due to
perceived attempts to impose the French language in courts and
schools.

Rather than seek to defuse the resulting uprising with dialogue, Mr
Biya has chosen to put it down with force. Predictably, the crisis has
intensified as a result. Hundreds of villagers have been killed in a
scorched-earth campaign by the army, hundreds of thousands have been
displaced, and the separatists have become more determined still.

Two opposition candidates who challenged Mr Biya at the polls have
declared victory before official results have been released. But
government skulduggery and the fragmentation of opposition votes, make
it likely that Mr Biya will emerge again on top.

France should take a lead in galvanising European and African
countries to pressurise his government into initiating dialogue.
Cameroon’s English-speakers have genuine grievances that need urgently
to be addressed — ideally in a wide-ranging national debate. But
Cameroonians of all origins have grievances too. The time to forestall
a wider revolt is running out.

read more





Norway not impressed with President Lungu's purchase of Luxury jet
Africa


Zambia is one of the largest recipients of Norwegian aid. Now, the
country’s president is buying a luxury aircraft that surpasses most.
The Russian company Sukhoi, Jevgenij Andratzhnikov , could start the
celebration when the contract for the sale of new luxury aircraft was
in the box.
The buyer is President Edgar Lungu of Zambia,the fifth largest
recipient of Norwegian aid in the last 50 years. It’s a fairly high
price,admitted to the Russians and was jubilantly happy according to
Russian media.
The price is around 400 million kroner.

read more












Kenya Shilling versus The Dollar Live ForexPros
Africa


During the week, the Kenya Shilling remained stable gained marginally
by 0.03% from Kshs 101.0 to Kshs 100.9  The Kenya Shilling has
appreciated by 2.2% year to date

read more














 
 
N.S.E Today


Gold continued to push higher after a stellar run last week and was
last trading at 1230.00
The purest geopolitical proxy in the markets is Gold. As Ben Bernanke
once said People hold gold “As protection against what we call tail
risks: really, really bad outcomes.”
The Bad Outcomes are a clear escalation in the US and China ''Cold War''
The so-called "anti-dragon clause," which prevents any country with a
free trade agreement with the U.S. from seeking free trade with
"nonmarket economies (China) without American consent
And concerns about the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Crude Oil is battling a very precarious Geopolitical situation with
the biggest supplier of Crude Oil to the World markets, the Kingdom of
Saudi Arabia signalling loud and clear that its wannabe King is simply
not tenable, he was already unconscionable I know.
Oil firmed about +0.5% and the risk is Trump inroads bucketloads of
Oil from the SPR ahead of the Mid-Terms
''An oil barrel may be priced in a different currency, Chinese yuan,
perhaps, instead of the dollar. And oil is the most important
commodity traded by the dollar today'' said @AlArabiya_Eng
And The @AlArabiya_Eng Writer seems to have forgotten that the King of
Saudi Arabia serves at the pleasure of the @Potus - That was agreed on
February 1945, when Roosevelt met with King Abdulaziz of Saudi Arabia
in person aboard the USS Quincy
Saudi Arabia markets have been taking a fearful beating
Last week the @NSE_PLC equities market was on [a] downward trend with
NASI, NSE 20 and NSE 25 declining by 4.4%, 2.0% and 4.3% via Cytxnn
The @NSE_PLC market is currently trading at a price to earnings ratio
(P/E) of 11.7x, and a dividend yield of 5.0%
however please refer to my Article from 24-SEP-2018 ::  Bears roam the
NSE and the number of Zombies grows
The Equity Market could not snap its losing streak and the Nairobi All
Share closed -2.48 points lower a 141.78.
The NSE20 retreated -24.06 points to close at 2782.97
Volumes remain anaemic and turnover clocked 274.8m.



N.S.E Equities - Commercial & Services


Safaricom corrected -3.26% to close at a 2018 Low of 22.25 and traded
8.478m shares. Its a Buy.



N.S.E Equities - Finance & Investment


Equity Group corrected -3.947% to close at 36.50 and traded 358,700
shares. Equity now trades on a Trailing PE of 7.2 and this is about as
cheap as it should get notwithstanding that we are in a fully fledged
Bear Market.
KCB Group corrected -2.0408% lower to close at 36.00 and traded 1.118m
shares. KCB now trades on a Trailing PE of 5.598.
Standard Chartered bucked the downdraft and firmed +2.688% to close at
191.00 on just 300 shares.



N.S.E Equities - Industrial & Allied


KenGen pushed +0.72% higher to close at 6.95 and traded 276,600
shares. KenGen has been rising in a down market ahead of its Earnings
Release and because it was badly oversold.


--



by Aly Khan Satchu (www.rich.co.ke)
 
 
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October 2018
 
 
 
 
 
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