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Tuesday 13th of November 2018
 
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Africa

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Macro Thoughts

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20 AUG 18 :: Currency Puzzles and a Weaponised Dollar. @TheStarKenya
Africa


Essentially the US has been raising rates [making holding the Dollar
more attractive] and reducing the supply of Dollars. Previously
emerging and frontier markets had been showering in a golden flood of
cheap Dollar liquidity, had been borrowing Dollars like there was no
tomorrow. but are now scrambling to find those Dollars because the
‘’Golden shower’’ has been switched off.

read more






7 AUG 17 ::The End Zone and the Mighty Dollar. @TheStarKenya
Africa


I think the rebound will gather strength because just about everyone
has been lulled into a sense of secu- rity. And that the dollar which
was deep in its end-zone has just thrown a hail-mary pass, which is
set to make up a lot of ground.

read more


Bernd Berg, global macro strategist at Woodman Asset Management, predicted the euro would tumble below $1.10 from the current $1.126 Reuters
Africa


Bernd Berg, global macro strategist at Woodman Asset Management,
predicted the euro would tumble below $1.10 from the current $1.126
“as renewed eurozone and Brexit angst and a diverging economic outlook
with a strong U.S. economy versus a weakening eurozone economy will
trigger further euro selling pressure.”

Home Thoughts

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'There are no hard distinctions between what is real and what is unreal, nor between what is true and what is false. A thing is not necessarily either true or false; it can be both true and false.'
Africa


Truth in drama is forever elusive. You never quite find it but the
search for it is compulsive. The search is clearly what drives the
endeavour. The search is your task. More often than not you stumble
upon the truth in the dark, colliding with it or just glimpsing an
image or a shape which seems to correspond to the truth, often without
realising that you have done so. But the real truth is that there
never is any such thing as one truth to be found in dramatic art.
There are many. These truths challenge each other, recoil from each
other, reflect each other, ignore each other, tease each other, are
blind to each other. Sometimes you feel you have the truth of a moment
in your hand, then it slips through your fingers and is lost.

read more



To maintain that power it is essential that people remain in ignorance, that they live in ignorance of the truth, even the truth of their own lives
Africa


Political language, as used by politicians, does not venture into any
of this territory since the majority of politicians, on the evidence
available to us, are interested not in truth but in power and in the
maintenance of that power. To maintain that power it is essential that
people remain in ignorance, that they live in ignorance of the truth,
even the truth of their own lives. What surrounds us therefore is a
vast tapestry of lies, upon which we feed.

read more


It never happened. Nothing ever happened. Even while it was happening it wasn't happening. It didn't matter. It was of no interest
Africa


It has exercised a quite clinical manipulation of power worldwide
while masquerading as a force for universal good. It’s a brilliant,
even witty, highly successful act of hypnosis.

I put to you that the United States is without doubt the greatest show
on the road. Brutal, indifferent, scornful and ruthless it may be but
it is also very clever. As a salesman it is out on its own and its
most saleable commodity is self love. It’s a winner. Listen to all
American presidents on television say the words, ‘the American
people’, as in the sentence, ‘I say to the American people it is time
to pray and to defend the rights of the American people and I ask the
American people to trust their president in the action he is about to
take on behalf of the American people.’

It’s a scintillating stratagem. Language is actually employed to keep
thought at bay. The words ‘the American people’ provide a truly
voluptuous cushion of reassurance. You don’t need to think. Just lie
back on the cushion. The cushion may be suffocating your intelligence
and your critical faculties but it’s very comfortable.

read more


Here is an extract from a poem by Pablo Neruda, 'I'm Explaining a Few Things':
Africa


And one morning all that was burning,
one morning the bonfires
leapt out of the earth
devouring human beings
and from then on fire,
gunpowder from then on,
and from then on blood.
Bandits with planes and Moors,
bandits with finger-rings and duchesses,
bandits with black friars spattering blessings
came through the sky to kill children
and the blood of children ran through the streets
without fuss, like children’s blood.

Jackals that the jackals would despise
stones that the dry thistle would bite on and spit out,
vipers that the vipers would abominate.

Face to face with you I have seen the blood
of Spain tower like a tide
to drown you in one wave
of pride and knives.

Treacherous
generals:
see my dead house,
look at broken Spain:
from every house burning metal flows
instead of flowers
from every socket of Spain
Spain emerges
and from every dead child a rifle with eyes
and from every crime bullets are born
which will one day find
the bull’s eye of your hearts.

And you will ask: why doesn’t his poetry
speak of dreams and leaves
and the great volcanoes of his native land.

Come and see the blood in the streets.
Come and see
the blood in the streets.
Come and see the blood
in the streets!*

Political Reflections

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BREAKING: Al-Shabaab fighters in Jilib town shot dead a foreign fighter identified as Abu Anas Al-Misri. source @HarunMaruf
Law & Politics


BREAKING: Al-Shabaab fighters in Jilib town shot dead a foreign
fighter identified as Abu Anas Al-Misri. Al-Misri was shot in a mosque
on Sunday after he rejected to surrender, pulled a hand grenade as
Al-Shabaab militants tried to detain him for being “Anti-Al-Shabaab” -
source

read more






Russia is doing a roaring trade in what military experts consider the world's most advanced air defence system S-400s @FinancialTimes
Law & Politics


Russia is doing a roaring trade in what military experts consider the
world’s most advanced air defence system. Turkey and India have signed
deals to buy S-400s, China has received its first deliveries and Saudi
Arabia, Qatar and Iraq are in negotiations

read more


"I think it's the worst of all worlds," @JustineGreening @Reuters
Law & Politics


May’s compromise plan, which seeks to maintain close trade ties with
the EU in future, is facing opposition from Brexiteers, pro-Europeans,
the Northern Irish party that props up her government, and even some
of her own ministers.
“I think it’s the worst of all worlds,” former education minister
Justine Greening told BBC radio, saying she did not think there was
any chance it could get through parliament.
“It leaves us with less influence, less controls over the rules we
have to follow,” added Greening, who supported staying in the EU in
the 2016 Brexit referendum.
Sterling tumbled to a 1-1/2 week low of $1.2838 in morning trade.
Traders cited a report by the Independent newspaper that May had been
forced to cancel an emergency cabinet meeting to approve a draft deal,
though a government source said no cabinet meeting had ever been
scheduled for Monday.

read more


Aung San Suu Kyi once stood as a symbol of hope, courage and the undying defence of human rights in #Myanmar. @kuminaidoo
Law & Politics


@amnesty recognised her with our highest honour, the Ambassador of
Conscience award.
Sadly, we can no longer justify this honour and today we are
withdrawing the award

read more





Currency Markets at a Glance WSJ
World Currencies


Euro 1.1246
Dollar Index 97.55
Japan Yen 113.99
Swiss Franc 1.0100
Pound 1.2880
Aussie 0.7211
India Rupee 72.635
South Korea Won 1133.22
Brazil Real 3.7674
Egypt Pound 17.9070
South Africa Rand 14.4124

read more








12-NOV-2018 :: Crude Oil, a Crown Prince plays his Get-Out-Of Jail Card and the US Mid-Terms
Commodities


WTI [American] Crude Oil peaked at a 4 year high price of $76.00+ at
the beginning of October. it closed at $60.10 on Friday. WTI Crude Oil
posted a record-beating sequence of  a ten session losing streak
through Friday, something the Price of Oil has never done since
records began in 1983.  Brent Crude closed at a 4 year high of just
below $86.00 at around the same time. It closed at $70.41 on Friday.
Both Crude Oil benchmarks are in bear markets. In fact, Crude Oil and
the FANGS were a bright spot in 2018 through October until they got
destroyed.

On the 2nd of  October, Jamal Khashoggi, a well-known journalist and
critic of the Saudi government, walked into the country's consulate in
Istanbul. He has not been seen since. In fact, President Erdogan whose
normal modus operandi is one of bluster and braggadaccio has played
this macabre murder on Turkish soil with finesse and a little like
Yehudi Menuhin played the Violin. Its been a virtuoso performance from
a Geopolitical perspective. The drip-drip Feed has meant closure has
been all but impossible for the House of Saud or is it the House of
Salman? Erdogan's rebound from Zero [You will recall the currency was
crashing around his ears not too long ago and he was in serious ''cold
Turkey''] to Hero has been spectacular.

The Target has always been MBS, alleged owner of Leonardo Da Vinci's
Salvator Mundi which is a painting of Christ as Salvator Mundi (Latin
for "Savior of the World")  dated to c. 1500. The painting shows
Jesus, in Renaissance dress, giving a benediction with his right hand
raised and two fingers extended, while holding a transparent rock
crystal orb in his left hand. The rock crystal orb of course
reappeared during Trump's visit to the Desert Kingdom. The Painting is
currently in the Louvre in Abu Dhabi because the ''optics'' of this
$450m purchase did not sit well with being the son and heir to the
Kingdom.  The King is called the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques
(خادم الحرمين الشريفين) after all. MBS is also the Proud Owner of the
Serene [yacht] which he bought for 500m Euros in 2015, while
vacationing in the south of France. Bruce Reidel alleges MBS sleeps on
the Serene off Jeddah because he too lives in fear of his life.

Mr. Khashoggi was murdered in cold blood in an obviously ''Quentin
Tarantino'' style operation. The facts as have been presented are
stranger than fiction and my question is if this is how they conduct
themselves on foreign soil, just imagine what must be going on at
home. The Image of Khashoggi's son being compelled to shake MBS's hand
is surely the most apposite metaphor for the House of Saud.

The proximity of the beginning of the bear market in Crude Oil and the
disappearance of Khashoggi is no coincidence. The Sell-Off was
''manufactured'' by the Crown Prince and was his response and an
attempt to release some of the Pressure from the [geopolitical]
Pressure Cooker. It produced a Tail-Wind [or did not allow the Price
of Gas to become a Head-Wind] for President Trump as he entered the
Mid-Terms, now behind us of course. It was actually a ''Set-Up''
Trade. It was the only Get Out of Jail Card that the Crown Prince
could play. The Question is does this keep on spinning lower under its
own momentum?

Initially the markets reacted as if the Democrat gains in the
Mid-Terms were likely to dial down the President's Tariff War. We saw
risk based assets like the ZAR rally to below 14.00, we saw ''Proxy
War'' currencies like the Australian Dollar rebound but then Mr.
Navarro [Trump's Trade Czar] said the following at a CSIS
presentation.

''If Wall Street is involved and continues to insinuate itself in
these negotiations, there will be a stench around any deal that’s
consummated because it will have the imprimatur of Goldman Sachs and
Wall Street,” Mr. Navarro said in a talk at the Center for Strategic
and International Studies, a Washington think tank.

Mr. Navarro lashed out at what he called “a self-appointed group of
Wall Street bankers and hedge-fund managers” who he described as
“globalist billionaires.”

“The mission of these unregistered foreign agents—that’s what they
are; they are unregistered foreign agents—is to pressure this
president into some kind of deal,” Mr. Navarro said.

There might not be much Christmas Cheer this year except of course for
Oil Consumers.

read more






Gabon's President Ali Bongo is gradually recovering some of his functions after becoming "seriously ill" last month on a trip to Saudi Arabia, a spokesperson for the presidency said on Sunday.
Africa


“The president’s health has improved over the last days,” presidency
spokesman Ike Ngouoni said in a video statement on the government’s
official Twitter account.

A lack of official information regarding Bongo’s health has fueled
speculation about his ability to govern. In an earlier statement, the
presidency said doctors in Riyadh had diagnosed Bongo with “severe
fatigue” and ordered bed rest. Last month Reuters, citing one
diplomatic source, said Bongo suffered a stroke

read more


Fayulu, the leader of the Engagement for Citizenship and Development party, will stand against Emmanuel Ramazani Shadary, a hardline former interior minister backed by Kabila in the December 23 vote
Africa


One of the issues dividing the opposition is the introduction of South
Korean electronic voting machines which some say will be used to rig
the vote.

Fayulu had said he would not contest if these machines were used, in
contrast to Tshisekedi who had said he was willing to take part in the
vote even if they were.

After Sunday's announcement Fayulu -- when questioned about this --
said the opposition would "work relentlessly to seek the scrapping" of
the machines.

"The battle continues, we want an election without voting machines," he said.

read more



Sudanese Militias Moonlight as Poachers in Central African Republic's Badlands @pulitzercenter
Africa


It was not the hippo carcass that troubled the wildlife rangers the
most. Nor were they especially surprised to uncover a cache of
powerful assault rifles in this volatile region awash with
uncontrolled arms.

The most unsettling find from their counter-poaching raid in Chinko, a
vast wildlife reserve in the Central African Republic (CAR), was a
handful of identity cards belonging to soldiers from Sudan's
paramilitary forces – a discovery suggesting that Khartoum’s fighters
are moonlighting as poachers hundreds of miles beyond its borders.

The Sudanese military and its auxiliaries are accused of committing
war crimes that range from using scorched-earth tactics to attacking
camps housing displaced civilians. The role of government-backed
soldiers in the illicit wildlife trade, however, is less known. The
evidence found deep in the Central African bush shines a light on the
covert, cross-border poaching forays launched by Sudanese militiamen
to profit from the demand for bush meat, ivory and traditional Chinese
medicine.

Almost twice the size of Yellowstone National Park, the vast yet
little-known Chinko reserve is one of the largest intact wildernesses
in Central Africa. Encompassing savanna and tropical forest, this
mixed ecosystem in south-eastern CAR is run by African Parks, a
conservation non-profit, and supports buffalo and elephant, lion and
leopard. The icon of this park is the giant eland, an imposing
antelope with a chestnut-brown coat, tightly-spiralled horns and a
large fold of skin hanging from its jowls. In the cool and dappled
light of gallery forests, iridescent sunbirds dart across streams as
colobus monkeys lounge in the canopy high above.

This multi-fronted poacher war is driving African elephants towards
the brink of extinction. Across CAR, the lucrative trade in ivory and
bushmeat has resulted in a 95 per cent depletion in the country’s
wildlife. Experts believe that, at the end of the 1970s, there were
around 70,000 elephants in CAR. Within five years, a bustling ivory
trade in CAR's capital, Bangui, and the onslaught of Chadian and
Sudanese poachers had slashed this population to just a third of its
size. As a result of this killing frenzy, the local elephant
population around Chinko has dramatically declined from approximately
2,600 at the end of the 1980s to just a few dozen individuals –
certainly no more than a hundred. These are breeding in small groups,
concealed deep inside the core of the reserve.

read more


Cash runs out in Khartoum as Sudan tries to halt economic crisis @ReutersAfrica
Africa


KHARTOUM (Reuters) - Many cash machines in the Sudanese capital have
run out of banknotes as the government scrambles to prevent economic
collapse with a sharp devaluation and emergency austerity measures.
Rising demand for cash due to inflation, lack of trust in the banking
system and the central bank’s policy of restricting the money supply
to protect the Sudanese pound have all contributed to a liquidity
crunch that has worsened in the past 10 days pending new banknote
deliveries.
The banknote shortage comes one month after authorities let the value
of the pound slide from 29 pounds to the dollar to 47.5 pounds and
announced measures to tighten spending.
“I move from place to place until I find a money changer with funds
because a large number of the cash machines are empty,” said Ahmed
Abdullah, a 42-year-old government employee.
“Why are we suffering like this to get our money?”
Spot checks with traders and market vendors showed that over the past
month the cost of a kilo of flour has risen 20 percent, beef 30
percent and potatoes 50 percent. Sudan’s inflation stood at more than
68 percent in September, one of the world’s highest rates.
On the black market, a dollar costs 52 pounds in sought-after cash and
58 pounds by check.
“We expect the price of the dollar to continue to rise,” one black
market currency trader told Reuters. “With the scarcity of foreign
currency the practice of dealing at the check price has become
widespread.”
The body of banks and exchanges that since last month has fixed the
official rate daily strengthened the pound to 46.95 pounds days after
the devaluation but soon returned it to 47.5.
“The real exchange rate is the parallel market,” said University of
Khartoum professor Mohammed al-Jak.

read more


Zimbabwe invites bids for struggling national airline @Reuters
Africa


Zimbabwe has invited bids for the state-owned airline as President
Emmerson Mnangagwa’s government pushes ahead with a drive to privatise
and end state funding to loss-making firms, Air Zimbabwe’s
administrator said
Air Zimbabwe, which owes foreign and domestic creditors more than $300
million, was in October placed into administration to try and revive
its fortunes.

read more



The rand weakened 0.2 percent to 14.3672 per dollar on Monday after sliding 3.3 percent in the previous two trading days.
Africa


Their call: “We expect the rand to be volatile, with a weakening bias
toward the R14.50 area in the short term.” The rand weakened 0.2
percent to 14.3672 per dollar on Monday after sliding 3.3 percent in
the previous two trading days. The currency has lost 14 percent
against the dollar this year, more than any emerging-market peer
except Argentina’s peso, Turkey’s lira and Russia’s ruble.

read more






Vodacom Falls as South Africa Consumer Woes Hit Sales Growth
Africa


Vodacom’s international portfolio was a bright spot, helped by the
recent acquisition of a stake in Nairobi-based Safaricom Plc from its
parent. Services such as money-transfer service M-Pesa have helped
drive growth, and the 2.3 million new customers in the period almost
matched the South African figure of 2.5 million.

Kenya

read more









Horticulture earnings hit Sh104bn in eight months @BD_Africa
Africa


Horticulture export earnings rose by a third to hit Sh104 billion in
the first eight months of 2018 compared to Sh78.2 billion earned
during a similar period last year.
Much of the growth was led by a rise in flower exports, whose earnings
are forecast to grow further after Kenya Airways late last month began
direct flights to New York.
Latest data from the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics shows that
flower exports brought in Sh76.9 billion from sales of 105.3 million
metric tonnes in the period, a 38 percent rise from the Sh55.6 billion
earned up to August 2017.

read more




 
 
N.S.E Today


The US Dollar remains on a Roll.
Crude Oil Prices slumped below $59.00 a barrel momentarily this morning.
Oil has sold off since Early October and is firmly in a bear market.
This development is a singularly excellent Outcome for Kenya Inc as
Crude Oil is our largest single expense item.
.@theresa_may pronounced that  Brexit talks [were]  ‘in the endgame’
Cash machines are running on empty in Khartoum.
Of course - Everyone is looking at Tanzania and the recent cashew nut
developments.
The Shilling which is the best performing currency in Africa was
trading at 102.55 Last.
The Key congestion zone is between 105.00-107.00 and frankly now with
Oil crumbling I would not expect us to get anywhere near there
notwithstanding a few recent broadsides [IMF refers]
The Capital Markets Authority (CMA) said TransCentury  and its
subsidiary East African Cables  are operating in a negative working
capital position contrary to the rules governing issuers at the
Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE).
Also on the list are Stanlib Kenya, Car & General and East African
Portland Cement Company (EAPCC)
The Nairobi All Share shaved off -0.38 points to close at 146.78.
The NSE20 eased -10.18 points to close at 2829.65
Equity Turnover clocked 385.624m.



N.S.E Equities - Commercial & Services


Vodacom is eyeing an entry into Ethiopia, Africa’s fastest-growing and
second-most populous country, in partnership with its Kenyan associate
company, Safaricom, CEO Shameel Joosub says [in a report carried by
Business Day].  The East African state, which said in June that it
will open its state-run telecoms monopoly to foreign investors, is
“probably the most attractive” potential new market for Vodacom,
Joosub told Business Day on Monday after the group reported a slowdown
in revenue growth in SA, its home market.

“But the opportunities are not that clear yet — there are indications
that Ethiopia will issue additional licences, and potentially take in
a strategic partner for the existing [government-owned] Ethio Telecom,
but there’s nothing yet in terms of actual processes and so on,”
Joosub said.

Safaricom closed unchanged at 24.25 and traded 11.991m shares worth 291.027m.

Kenya Airways has announced its set to launch direct flights from
Nairobi’s Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) to Somali capital
Mogadishu from Thursday. Kenya Airways eased 25cents to close at 10.25
on odd lot trading of 21,500 shares.

WPP-ScanGroup closed unchanged at 13.60 on odd-lot trading.



N.S.E Equities - Finance & Investment


Equity Group ticked -0.64% lower to close at 39.00 and traded 666,300
shares. Equity trades on a Trailing PE of 7.8 ands is a value trade
especially when you consider the steepening Earnings Trajectory of the
Regional subsidiaries.
Barclays Bank had 4 Buyers for every Seller and firmed +1.32% to close
at 11.50 and traded 403,200 shares and trades on a Trailing PE of
9.349.



N.S.E Equities - Industrial & Allied


KenGen eased -0.69% to close at 7.20 and traded 677,300 shares. I saw
a list of shares that might be sold to the Public and KenGen was cited
in that list. The Point to note is that the current share price
forecloses that Option. We would have to regain 10.00.



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