Factors To Watch


The U.S. dollar bounced to a two-week top on Monday and S&P futures rallied as traders marked the passage of a Senate tax bill over the weekend, a move that raises the risk of more aggressive rate hikes in the world’s largest economy.

Oil fell on Monday after U.S. shale drillers added more rigs last week, but prices held not far off their highest since mid-2015, supported by an extension of output cuts agreed last week by OPEC and other producers.

South Africa’s rand firmed on Friday and was on course to end the week up more than 3 percent against the dollar, as data signaled the domestic economy was on the mend. South Africa’s Shoprite SHIP J.J. confirmed on Friday that Steinhoff’s African subsidiary SRR  J.J has exercised call options to acquire a 23.1 per cent stake and 50.6 per cent voting control in Africa’s largest grocer.

The Kenyan shilling KES strengthened against the dollar on Friday over receding political risk and increased hard currency inflows, traders said. Kenya’s opposition National Super Alliance said on Sunday that one of its key strategists had been arrested in Kwale, in the country’s coastal region, and that his whereabouts were unknown.

The Central Bank of Nigeria and other agencies involved in the implementation of the Financial System Strategy(FSS 2020) will converge on Lagos to deliberate on the priorities on strategies for the next economic years(2018-2020). Nigeria’s Atiku Abubakar, a former vice president and key ally of President Muhammadu Buhari, said on Sunday he had joined the country’s opposition party after quitting the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) last month.

Zimbabwe’s new President Emmerson Mnangagwa dropped his education minister, a day after reappointing him to a cabinet which gave top posts to senior military officials in what was widely seen as a reward for the army’s role in the removal of his predecessor, Robert Mugabe.