Zimbabwe was in the hot seat this week as rioters took to the streets of Harare and Bulawayo to protest the government’s latest fuel price hikes. The violent police crackdown that ensued, with reports of up to eight deaths, will compromise a government intent on clearing billions of US dollars in arrears and end decades of financial isolation, said market participants.
As Ghana exits IMF support, Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta is talking up the prospects for the West-African nation harbouring grandiose ambitions for boosting infrastructure. A recent rebasing of its GDP saw its economy grow 30%, reducing its debt metrics to purportedly sustainable levels, but the latest expansionary budget received a thumbs down from investors, with its 2049 USD bond yields hitting double digits, potentially thwarting its issuance plans.
CEEMEA bonds were under pressure again, with a plunging oil price prompting a mid-week sell off before prices settled down as US market participants celebrated Thanksgiving. In the Middle East, spreads widened on the oil market collapse, and liquidity worsened in the CIS/Russian Eurobond market, according to an UAE-based asset manager, a Moscow-based analyst and a London-based trader.
This week’s collapse in oil prices has sent shockwaves across the GCC credit space, said two UAE-based asset managers and a London-based banker. Both WTI and Brent crude hit a three-year low on Tuesday (13 November), and although prices had stabilised by Thursday, a negative mood has set in, they said.
The Government of Mozambique’s proposal to restructure its 10.5% 2023 sovereign bonds, submitted today (6 November), is an important step toward reaching a final agreement, according to four market participants. However, questions remain regarding the timeline for implementation, the possibility holdout creditors may drag their feet, and the likely net present value (NPV) recovery rate.
The summer has produced plenty of sizzle in the FX markets as nominal currency exchange-rate volatility, trade wars, punitive tariffs, virulent diplomatic posturing, and higher interest rates have pushed the greenback upward since February.