Business News of 2014-02-14

Cedi begins to stabilise against major currencies

Measures instituted by the Bank of Ghana (BoG) to salvage the free fall of the cedi are gradually yielding the desired results.

A week before the directive was given, one dollar was bought at GH¢ 2.50, and sold for GH¢2.60; One pound was bought at GH¢4.50, and sold for GH¢ 4.60, while one euro was bought at GH¢ 3.70, and sold for GH¢3.80.

A survey of the forex market by the Daily Graphic yesterday, however, revealed that currently, a dollar was bought at about GH¢2.25, and sold at GH¢2.40; One pound was bought at GH¢4.20 and sold at GH¢4.40, while one euro was bought at GH¢3.40, and sold at GH¢3.60.

The scarcity and the inaccessibility of the major trading currencies have compelled businesses and individuals to resort to the illegal forex market popularly known as the “Black Market”.

Black market

A business man at the Tudu “Black Market”, Mr Buba Bongutande, speaking to the Daily Graphic, said one dollar was bought at GH¢2.40, and sold for GH¢2.50; One pound was bought at GH¢4.20, and sold for GH¢4.30, while one euro was bought at GH¢3.40, and sold for GH¢3.50.

He said they (unofficial forex operators), were happy with the turn of events in the forex market, explaining that “Black market” was beginning to boom in the city of Accra.

Scarcity of major currencies

Mr Bongutande said customers who were unable to purchase dollars from the legal system were compelled to use the “black market” as their last resort.

“And the high demand for the scarce currency has revived the basic principle in economics which states that “the higher the demand of a scarce commodity, the higher the price”, he added

Some actors in the “black market”, who spoke on grounds of anonymity, said they were able to access the currency from trusted sources they described as “somewhere”.

Licensed forex bureau operator

A licensed foreign-exchange bureau operator who also spoke on condition of anonymity said the central bank’s clampdown on dollar sales, to prop up the domestic currency would have a negative impact on businesses. According to him, the major trading currencies were still scarce, but, were also in high demand.

“One dollar was bought at GH¢2.45, and sold for GH¢2.55; One pound was bought at GH¢.50, and sold for GH¢4.55, while one euro was bought at GH¢3.50, and sold for GH¢3.60.

Interbank rates

The story was the same on the interbank market. A visit by the Daily Graphic to some banks saw most of the banks complying with the BoG directives.

At the Ghana Commercial Bank, one dollar was bought at GH¢2.44, and sold for GH¢2.49. One pound was bought at GH¢4.01, and sold for GH¢4.05, while one euro was bought at GH¢3.30, and sold for GH¢3.36.

The situation was not quite different from that of the UT Bank. While one dollar was bought at GH¢2.41 and sold for GH¢2.5, a pound was bought at GH¢3.95 and sold for GH¢4.1. One euro was bought at GH¢ 3.26 and sold for GH¢3.415. At the Fidelity Bank, one dollar went for GH¢2.535, and bought at GH¢2.435, while a pound went for GH¢4.21, and a euro was bought at GH¢3.318, and sold for GH¢3.454.

Background

The Bank of Ghana (BoG), as part of its measures to stem the free fall of the cedis, has directed all institutions, to desist from pricing or accepting foreign currencies as a means of exchange for their products. As part of the measures, it has banned financial institutions from issuing cheques on foreign exchange accounts (FEA) and foreign currency accounts (FCA).

Source: graphic.com
« Previous | Next »
View Comments
Sponsor Links
News Categories
Site Menu