Cedi depreciates by 5% in 2017

Some currency analysts have predicted that the cedi’s depreciation is expected to continue, at least to the end of 2017.

Citi Business News’ analysis shows a continuous streak of the local currency for a greater part of this year.

For this year alone, the cedi has depreciated by about 5 percent on the interbank foreign exchange market.

The year started with a dollar trading at 4 cedis 20 pesewas.

Presently, you will need as much as 4 cedis 41 pesewas to buy a dollar.

For the first nine months, the cedi depreciated between 0.7 and 3 percent.

The General Manager of Treasury at HFC, Joseph Nketsia attributes the depreciation to the relatively low supply of dollars and increased imports ahead of the festive season.

“If the intervention by the central bank is not enough to stem the tide then the cedi will continue to depreciate against the major currencies,” he said.

Quarter on quarter performance

The highest depreciation has been that recorded between January and March this year.

The cedi depreciated by as much as 14 pesewas, from 4 cedis 20 pesewas to 4 cedis 34 pesewas.

Subsequently, the local currency depreciated by about one percent or 4 pesewas in the second quarter; from 4 cedis 32 pesewas to 4 cedis 36 pesewas.

This was followed by about 0.7 percent depreciation in the third quarter where the currency depreciated by some 3 pesewas to trade between 4 cedis 37 pesewas and 4 cedis 40 pesewas.

Businesses want solution

But concerns of low supply of the dollar are confirmed by some forex bureaus in the national capital.

Owura, an attendant at a forex bureau in Adabraka says they are shot of dollars.

“Right now, we don’t have any dollar so what we do is we buy and we sell it immediately. This is because the possibility of its value reducing is very high and we will lose as a result,” he explained.

Also, importers are but one of the many businesses facing the brunt of the depreciation.

An Executive member of the Ghana Union of Traders Association (GUTA) Benjamin Yeboah wants authorities to intervene and reverse the trend to reduce their plight.

“This currency issue has always been an issue for traders and the business people in the sense that it is not readily available at the banks and therefore people will have to roam outside the banking sectors in search of dollars and that to me is not the very best,” he lamented.