macroafricaintel Daily Brief | 16 Mar

By Rafiq Raji, PhD
Twitter: @DrRafiqRaji, @macroafrica

Global Markets

  • Stocks plunge, dollar slides as Fed’s emergency cut spooks investors
  • Fed cuts rates to 0-0.25%
  • Dollar drops 2% vs yen
  • Australian market down 7%, Nikkei futures sliding

Oil Markets

  • Oil slides again, squeezed between coronavirus demand hit and price war bite
  • Brent down $1.13 at $32.72 a barrel (0230GMT)
  • WTI down 72 cents at $31.01

Precious metals

  • Gold rises after Fed rate cut, but pares gains on cash hunt
  • Spot gold up 0.9% at $1,543.60/oz. (0248GMT)
  • US gold futures up 1.8% at $1,544.20/oz.


  • Soybeans fall near 10-mth low on coronavirus spread
  • Soybean futures down 1% at $8.41-1/4 a bushel (0019GMT)
  • Corn futures down 0.8% at $3.62-3/4 a bushel
  • Wheat futures down 0.4% at $5.03-3/4 a bushel

Key African events or data releases today
[Posts & comments at my Twitter handles @DrRafiqRaji, @macroafrica]

  • South Africa inter-ministerial briefing on new COVID-19 measures
  • Special meeting of top officials of South Africa’s ruling ANC
  • Ghana opposition NDC’s Mahama press briefing
  • Nigeria inflation Feb-20 [fcst. 12.2% yy, prev. 12.1%]

Key African events or data releases over the weekend & early a.m today

  • African nations close borders, cancel flights to contain coronavirus spread
  • Sudan suspends higher education institutions over coronavirus
  • Morocco to create $1 bln fund to counter coronavirus outbreak
  • South Africa’s Ramaphosa declares state of disaster over COVID-19
  • Lagos gas blast kills 15, destroys several buildings – Nigerian officials
  • Algeria to suspend all flights to and from France from Tuesday
  • Sudan inflation hit 71.36% in February on food, drink price rises
  • Egypt’s central bank ready to intervene if necessary
  • Equatorial Guinea reports first coronavirus case, health ministry says
  • Tunisia ask citizens for donations to help tackle coronavirus
  • France asks airlines to help citizens stuck in Morocco
  • Four more African nations confirm coronavirus, new controls put in place
  • Morocco suspends all international passenger flights – foreign ministry
  • Tunisia beach resorts face up to coronavirus blight
  • Egypt trading suspended as shares plunge due to coronavirus
  • Congo Republic reports first coronavirus case – govt statement
  • Libya’s Tripoli govt declares emergency, shuts down ports, airports
  • Sudan closes schools and universities for one month over coronavirus
  • Egypt shuts schools, universities for 2 weeks as virus cases increase
  • Central African Republic confirms first coronavirus case – WHO
  • Seychelles confirms two coronavirus cases – health commissioner
  • Senegal orders all schools closed in response to coronavirus
  • Two western hostages freed after 15-mth captivity in Africa’s Sahel
  • South Africa’s coronavirus cases rise to 38, health ministry says
  • Congo health authorities stumble with first coronavirus case confusion
  • Namibia reports first two cases of coronavirus, imposes travel ban
  • Rwanda confirms first case of coronavirus – health ministry
  • Kenya, Ethiopia join expanding list of African states with coronavirus
  • Mauritania confirms first coronavirus case
  • eSwatini in Southern Africa reports first coronavirus case
  • Egypt reports 13 new cases of coronavirus, bringing total to 93
  • Embattled Malawi president dissolves cabinet
  • Morocco to close all schools starting March 16 over coronavirus fears – education ministry
  • Tunisia suspends prayers in mosque, bans gatherings due to coronavirus
  • Libya closes schools over coronavirus
  • Soccer – African Nations Cup qualifiers postponed over coronavirus
  • Africa Oil – Nigerian under pressure due to weak demand
  • Libya’s NOC to cut all non-essential expenses – statement
  • Egypt says nearly 20 killed in freak bad weather
  • Algerians defy coronavirus threat to keep up protests
  • South Africa’s rand recovers as stimulus spurs risk buying
  • Morocco suspends all passenger sea and air trips to France – state news agency
  • Mauritius central bank pumps in liquidity to support businesses
  • Sudan reports first coronavirus case
  • Russia sees no grounds to resume talks with OPEC+ – Ifax cites energy minister
  • Tunisia to require self-isolation for all visitors from abroad – state media
  • South Africa’s ex-president Zuma’s bid to stop corruption trial is rejected
  • Uganda shilling trades flat as demand recedes
  • Kenya shilling drops slightly after first case of coronavirus
  • Zambia power firm Zesco says electricity deficit growing
  • Uganda accuses ex-general of seeking Rwanda suppor to remove Museveni
  • Ghana, Gabon confirm first cases of coronavirus
  • Ivory Coast leader backs PM Gon Coulibaly in presidential race
  • Facebook, Twitter remove Russia-linked accounts in Ghana targeting US

N.B. Full stories of above headlines are available on Reuters

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