Thursday 15 December 2016

South African Rand Leapfrogs Nigerian Naira As Africa’s Top Currency


    The South African rand has regained its position as Africa’s top currency, leapfrogging the Nigerian naira this week.
    This comes after four major events in recent months: the Brexit vote, the South African municipal election results, the rand gaining more than 16% against the dollar since the start of 2016, and the naira losing more than a third of its value after Nigeria’s central bank removed a currency peg in June.

    South Africa’s economy was at $301-billion (R4-trillion), while Nigeria’s gross domestic product (GDP) was $296-billion (R3.9-trillion), Bloomberg reported. These figures are based on GDP at the end of 2015, published by the International Monetary Fund.
    The momentum that took the naira above the rand two years ago was now long gone, according to the Bloomberg article.

    Business Day Live reported that at 9.05am on 12 August‚ the rand was at R13.4267 to the dollar from R13.4065 at the previous close. It was at R14.9591 against the euro from R14.9303 previously‚ and at R17.3839 against the pound from R17.3670 previously.
    Despite the positive news on the rand, Bloomberg said its reign as top currency may not last long as the naira may bounce back.

    The rand got a major push following Britain’s vote on 23 June to exit the European Union, which made investors turn to emerging markets. But the South African local elections on 3 August, particularly its dramatic results, have encouraged investors even further.
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