African Markets - Factors to watch on Aug. 18



NAIROBI, Aug 18 (Reuters) - The following company announcements, scheduled economic indicators, debt and currency market moves and political events may affect African markets on Thursday.

- - - - - GLOBAL MARKETS Asian shares tracked lower on Thursday, in step with Wall Street's losses, as even the prospect of a less aggressive Federal Reserve has still set the U.S. central bank on a path for interest rates to stay higher for longer. WORLD OIL PRICES Oil prices were little changed on Thursday as investors grappled with falling stockpiles in the United States, rising output from Russia and worries about a potential global recession.

EMERGING MARKETS For the top emerging markets news, double click on AFRICA STOCKS For the latest news on African stocks, click on SOUTH AFRICA MARKETS The South African rand fell on Wednesday after data showing a surprise drop in retail sales fuelled worries of consumers curbing their spending habits in the face of rising inflation and as frequent power cuts limited industry-wide activity.

KENYA MARKETS Kenya's shilling KES= weakened against the dollar on Wednesday due to increased demand for hard currency from oil marketing companies and the manufacturing sector, as businesses resumed activity after elections, traders said. KENYA ELECTION Kenya's president-elect William Ruto said on Wednesday there was no time to waste in tackling an economic crisis, as defeated rival Raila Odinga prepared a legal challenge to overturn his loss in Aug. 9's election.

GHANA ECONOMY Ghana's central bank on Wednesday delivered its biggest rate hike ever, a 300 basis point increase to 22% GHCBIR=ECI, at an emergency meeting to address the economy's rapid deterioration amid crippling inflation.

GUINEA POLITICS A young man was shot dead by security forces during an anti-government protest in Guinea's capital, Conakry, on Wednesday, an opposition coalition said. NIGERIA POWER Workers at the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) have suspended a strike that began on Wednesday and caused a nationwide blackout, a workers union official said after a meeting with the government. MALI SECURITY Mali says France has violated its airspace and delivered arms to Islamist militants in an attempt to destabilise the West African country, the latest in a barrage of accusations that have marked the bitter end to their once close relations. CONGO SECURITY Suspected rebels have killed civilians and damaged a major hydropower plant under construction in Virunga National Park in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, the park operator said on Wednesday. NAMIBIA ECONOMY Namibia's central bank on Wednesday raised its main lending rate by 75 basis points to 5.50% NACBIR=ECI, tightening policy further in response to rising inflation and matching a move by South Africa's central bank last month. ZAMBIA ECONOMY Zambia's central bank kept its monetary policy rate unchanged at 9.0% on Wednesday, and lowered its inflation and economic growth forecasts for this year.

CONGO MINING Democratic Republic of Congo's prime minister expects to host talks between China's CMOC 603993.SS and state miner Gecamines in the coming days over a dispute at their Tenke Fungurume copper and cobalt project, his office said on Wednesday.

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