The Lusaka Securities exchange (LuSE) has been named the most profitable stock exchange in Africa for 2022. This comes after the Lusaka Securities Exchange Index appreciated a return of 12% in dollar terms to investors over course of the year. According to a report by News 24, the increase in share price comes as investor sentiment grows following President Hakainde Hichilema’s resounding 2021 election victory and increased confidence in his zero-corruption policies. The LUSE was first named Africa’s most profitable stock exchange in 2021.
Best Performing Stocks of 2022
Based purely on earnings per share (measuring difference in current price per share / initial price paid per share) the best performing stocks of 2022 were Zambia National Savings Bank (Zanaco) and Copperbelt Energy Group. CEC Africa’s CEO was recently quoted claiming the company profit for 2022 standing at a whopping $60 million. The group returned an estimated 20% profit to all shareholders with on dividend payments alone. According to the group’s half year report, revenues stood at $182 million, with full year revenue expected to beat 2021 ($342 million). The company’s share price almost doubled from K2.60 per share at the beginning of 2022 to peaking at K4.00 (currently K3.78) and the dividend paid for half year 2022 stood at K0.4995 per share.
Zanaco Plc welcomed the new year by being named the first Zambian bank to declare profit after tax exceeding $1 billion. According to the groups half year report profit is down 12% compared to HY 2022, however operating income and customer deposits saw an increase of 11% and 28% respectively. The bank’s share price has almost doubled from K1.9 per share to nearly K3.19 as of 2023, an increase of . The company paid out a dividend of K0.252 per share. AECI (Africa Mining & Explosives Zambia) was a surprise winner with an increase of 42% to reach a share price of K42 per share from 2021 closing at K29 (reaching a peak of K45 per share). The company attributed this share growth to an increase in investor appetite for the local mining market; they paid a record dividend of K0.9 per share.
Kwacha Bull run Breeds Strong Returns
In 2022, the Kwacha became one of the best performing currencies in the world, even beating the Russian Ruble following the European Energy Crisis. This is mainly attributed to significant increases in investment in the country including speculation on the confirmation of an IMF Credit Extension Facility to offset a debt crisis. In June the Bank of Zambia was offloading more than $13 million per day in order to protect the Kwacha against the volatile forex market (According to Statistician Patrick Chileshe), showing the benefits of a strong / consistent monetary policy. Inflation in Zambia in 2022 averaged around 12%, half the global average of 24% amidst a cost of living crisis.