Egypt, Namibia record double-digit gains

After a shaky start to the year, African indices regained some composure to end the quarter on a more stable footing. Of the 11 main indices in Africa, ex South Africa, five made gains in the first three months of 2016 and six lost ground.

In March the gainers were bolstered by a rebound in commodity prices and the Fed’s caution on increasing interest rates in the US, which saw the dollar depreciate against a basket of other currencies.

Egypt’s EGX 30 surged 22.42% to push the index 7.41% into positive territory year to date on the back of strong corporate earnings in the banking and real-estate sectors as well as the central bank’s devaluation of the Egyptian pound against the US dollar, and moves towards a more flexible exchange regime.

Namibia’s NSX Overall Index also recorded a double-digit gain in March to end the month 13.12% higher and 14.65% up year to date.

Kenya’s NSE 20 gained 3.10% for the month but was -1.45% in the red on the year.

Nigeria’s All Share Index increased 2.99% but remained 11.65% in deficit for the year.

Tunisia’s TUNINDEX rose 2.51% in March, lifting its year-to-date gains to 7.51%.

The Morocco All Share Index (MASI) gained 4.71% in March and was up 4.51% since the start of the year.

Ghana’s GSE Composite Index retreated -3.05% in March to settle -4.16% down YTD.

Zimbabwe’s ZSE Industrial Index shed -1.9% for the month to end 15% lower YTD, making it the worst performer for the year. On March 23, Indigenisation Minister Patrick Zhuwao said Zimbabwe would shut down foreign-owned companies on April 1 if they did not comply with legislation that requires 51% ownership of companies by black Zimbabweans.

The SEMDEX in Mauritius retreated -0.75% to end just under water for the year, at -0.77%.

The Lusaka All Share decreased -0.73% in March, taking its quarterly deficit to -3.5%.

Botswana’s Gaborone Index slipped -0.30% to end the month -3.77% down YTD. Copyright. HedgeNews Africa – April 2016.