Offshore investors return to equity markets following World Bank inspired exits 

Offshore investors who had made panicky saleoffs last month are returning to the securities market. Photo / File 

What you need to know:

  • It the aftermath of the World Bank suspension of new loans to Uganda, many offshore investors made panicky saleoffs, but Bank of Uganda says many of them have since returned  

Bank of Uganda has said offshore investors have returned to the securities market with inflows rising to about $200m. 

This, Bank of Uganda said, could be due to high returns in government debt held in Treasury Bills and Treasury Bonds, which average at 15.5 percent. 

The increase follows a announcement by the World Bank last month that created uncertainty in financial markets.

Earlier, the announcement had resulted into panicky sale offs, which created a lot of pressure against the shilling. 

Speaking at the Bank of Uganda media training on key economic indicators in Kampala, Dr Ibrahim Serwanja, the deputy director financial stability, said despite uncertainties in the money markets, the country had seen $200m inflows from offshore investors, signalling a return from panicky exits. 

“The financial market is stable and offshore investors are again investing in government securities after outflow of some of them due the World Bank announcement,” he said. The World Bank announcement, in which it said it had suspended new loans to Uganda due to the Anti-Homosexuality Act, had put pressure on the shilling, which within days depreciated heavily against the dollar.  However, the unit is now relatively stable even as it remains weaker than the pre-announcement period.    

Dr Sulaiman Nyanzi, the Bank of Uganda assistant director research, said the World Bank announcement had impacted the shilling, which in the immediate depreciated by 90 percent against the dollar, but noted that the exchange rate had stabilised. 

However, he said Bank of Uganda had recorded a reduction in demand for foreign currency in September compared to August. 

“The currency has been stable but steadily depreciating [due to increased demand] from oil importers, manufacturers and importers who are stocking ahead of the festivity season,” Dr Nyanzi said. 

As of Friday last week average yield to maturity of the 91 day Treasury Bill was 10.11 percent, while the three-year Treasury Bond was 13.634 percent. 

The five-year was 15.019 percent, while the 10, 15 and 20-year Bond was at 15.58 percent, 16.007 percent and 16.438 percent, respectively.