Ghana’s cedi weakened to a record as the central bank set limits on foreign-exchange transactions and ordered sales and purchases be done in the local currency, in a bid to halt the second-worst decline among African currencies this year.
Investors are awaiting evidence that Zambia’s efforts to shore up its currency will succeed as the government starts marketing a Eurobond, sub-Saharan Africa’s first sovereign international debt sale this year.
Seidu Haruna, the owner of a licensed foreign-exchange bureau in the capital of Ghana, says the central bank’s clampdown on dollar sales to prop up the domestic currency will hurt business, as it drives customers to black-market traders in an alley around the corner.
The Bank of Zambia called an emergency meeting with lenders to probe a drop in the nation’s currency to a record against the dollar, two weeks after Ghana limited foreign-currency sales to halt a slide in the cedi.
The second-best dollar-bond rally in Africa this month is signaling growing speculation that Ghana will seek aid from the International Monetary Fund as the government struggles to close its budget deficit.