The cedi gained against four major currencies but headed southwards against the US Dollar. Average rates on the forex market against the dollar stood at GH¢3.50, representing a 0.48 per cent slip.
The start of public sector strike in Germany weighed on the shared currency this week. The cedi, thus, took advantage to appreciate by 0.97 per cent against the Euro. Average rates on the forex market read GH¢3.86.
Against the Pound and the Swiss Franc, the cedi gained 0.51 per cent and 0.30 per cent to close at GH¢5.33 and GH¢3.63 respectively.
The cedi also appreciated by 2.22 per cent against the South African Rand to end the week at GH¢0.30.
The stock market’s two-week rally fizzled last week as gains in Standard Chartered Bank, GCB Bank and four other financial stocks failed to push the indices higher.
Declines in six equities thus weighed on the benchmark Composite Index, which lost 4.49 points to close the week at 2,173.46. The market’s return, as a result, slid to -3.87 per cent from last week’s -3.67 per cent.
Weighed down by declines in Societe Generale, Ecobank Transnational and HFC Bank, the Financial Stocks Index (FSI) also declined by 0.75 points to close the week at 2162.10. The return on the financial index stood at -3.63 per cent.
Stanchart and GCB Bank extended their rally and led advancers with each climbing 10GHp each to close at GH¢20.25 and GH¢5.25 respectively. CAL Bank followed with a 5GHp gain to GH¢1.05. Ecobank Ghana, on the back of increasing demand, bagged 2GHp to close the week at GH¢7.50.
UT Bank and SIC Insurance regained some grounds as they closed the week with a pesewa gain each to 19GHp and 23GHp respectively.
Preference shares holders of Stanchart were also 3GHp richer as the equity closed the week at 62GHp.
On the other hand, HFC Bank trimmed 10GHp to GH¢1.15; Societe Generale was down 4GHp to GH¢1.02. Four other equities also dropped a pesewa each. Unilever Ghana and Ecobank Transnational Incorporated slipped to GH¢8.39 and 25GHp respectively. Mechanical Lloyd and Cocoa Processing Company also eased to 23GHp and 1GHp respectively.
A total of 1.32 million shares valued at GH¢2.55 million exchanged hands in 23 equities last week. This compared favourably with the previous week’s 889,756 shares valued at GH¢1.98 million.
With investors continuing to take positions ahead of the dividend season, we look forward to the market steadying as share prices are likely to be given a boost.
Ecobank Ghana, Standard Chartered Bank and GCB Bank are expected to rise on increasing demand.
The Bank of Ghana achieved its target amount at the auction held on February 27.
Although bids tendered outstripped offers, the bank accepted favourable bids for their offers.
At the close of the auction, the 91 and 182-day bills slipped but the long dated securities were unchanged.
A total of GH¢1.06 billion was raised in bills and notes.
At the end of the public sale, the 91 and 182-day bills dropped five basis points and a basis point respectively to close at 25.8 per cent and 26.41 per cent while the 1-Year and 2-Year Notes remained at 22.5 per cent and 23 per cent respectively.
Source: UMB Stockbrokers
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