Ghana’s cedi, the worst performing African currency today, weakened the most in six months against the dollar to a record low as importers paid for goods brought into the country.
The currency of the world’s second-biggest cocoa producer depreciated by 1.2 percent, the biggest slide on an intraday basis since Jan. 2, to 2.0025 per dollar as of 4:08 p.m. in the capital, Accra. The cedi has lost 4.9 percent against the dollar so far this year, the second-worst performer in West Africa after Gambia’s Dalasi.
“Businesses are importing a lot more and they have to pay their bills,” Adelaide Apenteng, a currency trader at Accra-based Ghana Commercial Bank Ltd., said by phone. “Once the goods they sell get finished, they will want to buy again.”
Ghana’s economy, the biggest in West Africa after Nigeria, is forecast by the government to expand 8 percent this year, faster than the 5.3 percent average growth in sub-Saharan Africa estimated by the International Monetary Fund. That growth is fueling demand for imports that according to Fitch Ratings will push the deficit in the current account, the broadest measure of trade in goods and services, to 10.2 percent of gross domestic product this year.
Yields on the nation’s dollar-denominated bonds due October 2017 declined from their highest level since August, falling seven basis points, or 0.07 percentage point, to 5.25 percent.