COVID-19 and SSA's Manufacturing Sector: Operating in Difficult Times


Friday, May 15, 2020  / 3:54 PM / United Capital Research / Header Image Credit: GPPi


Stock markets around the world defied expectations in the month of April-2020. In Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA), despite the economic lockdown, surge in number of COVID-19 cases, low commodity prices and the high level of uncertainties, Investors took advantage of the cheap valuation to average down portfolio costs during the month. Notably, equities markets in Nigeria (+8.1%m/m), South Africa (+13.1% m/m) and Kenya (+5.9% m/m) chalked m/m gains, while the Ghanaian Stock Exchange (-2.7%) mildly ended the month in the red territory.  

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In Nigeria, attractive dividend yield, improved outlook on crude oil prices following OPEC+ deal, and the low interest rate on Treasury bills, fuelled renewed interest in the stock market. Also, investors bought the March-2020 dip in South Africa and Kenya, with valuations supported by the weaker currencies that characterized the month in both countries - South Africa's rand (-3.7% m/m) and Kenya' shillings (-2.1% m/m). Meanwhile, investors adopted a risk-off approach in Ghana, maintaining preference for the high yielding government and the Bank of Ghana' backed fixed income securities. 


Looking ahead, we believe the gradual easing of lockdown across different the region, the disbursement/approval of IMF loans, as well as decrease in level of risk aversion should boost investors' appetite for equity market investment. However, we expect the recent suspension of the final dividend payment for FY-2019 by Scancom Plc. (MTN Ghana) until further notice to further dampen sentiments on the Ghanaian Stock Exchange in May-2020.


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Apr-2020 Inflation Report -  May 23rd

Policy Rate Announcement - May 23rd



Mar-2020 Net Trade Balance - May 21st



Bank of Ghana Interest Rate -  May 15th

Apr-2020 Money Supply YoY -  May 15th



Benchmark Interest Rate - May 27th



Apr-2020 Inflation Report -  May 23rd



Apr-2020 Inflation Report -  May 16th


South Africa

Feb-2020 Mining Production YoY -  May 

19th Apr-2020 Inflation Report - May 27th


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 Proshare Nigeria Pvt. Ltd.

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