LUSAKA - Zambia's currency is next week likely hold firm against the dollar, while Kenya's and Nigeria's are set to weaken. Ugandan and Tanzanian currencies are expected to hold steady.
The kwacha is projected to maintain a bullish trend against the dollar in the coming week as hard currency supply continues to outweigh demand.
On Thursday, commercial banks quoted the currency of Africa's second-largest copper producer at 16.9750 per dollar from 16.9870 at the close of business a week ago.
"The market has witnessed less forex demand which continues to be relatively met by offloads from corporates and the central bank," Access Bank said in a note.
Kenya's shilling is expected to weaken, undermined by increased importer dollar demand from various sectors, especially energy.
Commercial banks quoted the shilling at 115.85/116.05 per dollar, from last Thursday's close of 115.70/90. During Thursday's session, the shilling touched an all-time low of 115.90/116.10, according to Refinitiv data.
"We expect it to remain under pressure. We are seeing a lot of (dollar) demand, from the energy sector mainly. There is quite some demand in the market," a trader at one commercial bank said.
Nigeria's naira could ease on the black market in the coming week as increased political spending ahead of month-end election primaries hits the currency, traders said.
The currency traded at 589 naira per dollar on Thursday on the unofficial market, recovering from a record low of 590 naira. The unit traded within a range of 413 to 417 naira on the official market.
A stronger dollar could hurt the naira, traders said.
"With the U.S. Federal Reserve lifting interest rates by half a percentage point, its biggest hike in more than two decades, we expect there will be increased pressure on the naira in the near term," Murega Mungai of African currency broker AZA, wrote in a note.
The Ugandan shilling is seen trading rangebound in the coming days as month-end inflows of hard currency balance out demand from energy and other importers.
At 1045 GMT commercial banks quoted the shilling at 3,545/3,555, compared with last Thursday's close of 3,550/3,560.
"Demand from some importers like energy firms is strong but being around end-of-month inflows should also be able to sufficiently absorb this demand," said an independent foreign exchange trader in the capital Kampala.
He said the shilling would likely change hands between 3,540-3,570 levels in the coming days.
Tanzania's shilling is expected to hold steady next week with inflows from agricultural exports and non-governmental organisations matching the demand for the dollar from the energy and manufacturing sectors.
Commercial banks quoted the shilling at 2,320/2,330 on Thursday, the same levels recorded a week earlier.
"We expect the shilling to remain stable over the coming week," said Terry Karanja, a treasury associate at AZA, a Nairobi-based forex trading firm.
(Reporting by Chris Mfula, George Obulutsa, Chijioke Ohuocha, Elias Biryabarema and Nuzulack Dausen; Compiled by Chris Mfula; Editing by Alex Richardson)