macroafricaintel Daily Brief | 31 Aug

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

Global Markets

  • Asian stocks reach 29-mth top, China services surprisingly strong
  • Nikkei rallies, hopes new PM will stick with stimulus
  • China service PMI strong, blue chips highest since mid-2015
  • Dollar near 2-yr trough as Fed commits to easy policy
  • Risk of future inflation pushes up US long-term yields
  • Brent up 26 cents at $46.07/barrel, gold at $1,969/oz.

Oil Markets

  • Oil prices edge up on stimulus support despite ample supplies
  • Brent set for 5th monthly gain; 4th mth for WTI
  • Hedge funds cut bullish bets on US crude – CFTC
  • Brent up 0.6% at $46.08 a barrel (0038GMT)
  • WTI up 0.3% at $43.11

Precious metals

  • Gold hits near 2-wk high on dollar weakness, dovish Fed
  • Spot gold up 0.3% at $1,969.98/oz. (0304GMT)
  • US gold futures up 0.2% at $1,978.70/oz.


  • Corn set for biggest monthly gain since May 2019 on US dryness
  • Corn futures up 0.8% at $3.62-1/4 a bushel (0304GMT)
  • Soybeans up 1.5% at $9.64-2/3 a bushel
  • Wheat up 4% so far in August

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

  • Central Bank of Nigeria resumes FX sales to BDCs
  • South Africa M3 Jul-20 [fcst. 10.3% yy, prev. 11.1%]
  • South Africa PSCE Jul-20 [fcst. 5.6% yy, prev. 5.6%]
  • South Africa trade balance Jul-20 [prev. ZAR46.63B]
  • Kenya, Uganda & Zambia release August inflation data
  • South Africa state capture inquiry continues
  • Covid-19 updates by authorities across the continent

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

  • Ghana to reopen international air borders from Sept. 1, says president
  • Schools to reopen in Nigeria’s Lagos as Covid-19 cases decline
  • Ten militants and five civilians killed in east Congo violence – army, local leader
  • Egypt detains second suspect in alleged rape case, three more held in Lebanon
  • Mauritius fishermen battle to save dozens dolphins near oil spill
  • South Africa’s Ramaphosa to appear before ruling party’s integrity commission
  • Angola to join oil and extractives transparency group
  • Thousands protest in Mauritius over dead dolphins, demand resignations
  • Namibia opens airports and schools but extends overnight curfew
  • Influential Libya interior minister suspended amid protests
  • Acting leader of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood arrested in Cairo
  • Mali’s neighbours tell junta to transfer power to transitional govt
  • Plaintiffs in Sierra Leone diamond mine lawsuit request freeze of Steinmetz subsidiary’s assets
  • Sierra Leoneans sue govt for alleged environmental failings at diamond mine
  • Sierra Leone community’s suit against diamond miner shows activist trend
  • Tanzania opposition alleges irregularities in candidates’ enrollment
  • South Africa’s ex-leader Zuma, accused of graft, hits out at successor
  • Former CAR interim leader to run in December poll
  • At least two students killed during exams in eastern Congo
  • Western diplomats express deep concern over Zimbabwe crisis
  • ECOWAS agrees Mali’s transitional govt to last only one year: Nigerian presidency
  • South Africa sees worst power cuts in record in 2020, research shows
  • UN says life of Congo’s Nobel Laureate doctor in danger
  • Renewed tensions over commercial farming on Uganda abandoned land
  • West Africa leaders to push Mali junta to hand over power within a year
  • Kenya Airways losses deepen, expects more challenges ahead
  • Uptake of South Africa’s Covid loan scheme likely to stay minimal – banking association
  • South Africa’s coronavirus loan scheme likely to pay out only $1.5 bln by 2021 – banking association
  • Where state is weak, Mali militants broker talks between rival clans

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

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