Datatec falls most in 14 years

As weaker currencies hurt profit.
Datatec, a South African computer-technology company, fell the most in more than 14 years after reporting a 25% fall in first-half earnings per share due to a weaker Angolan kwanza and rand against the US dollar.

The company, which installs Cisco Systems products and has operations in the US and UK, fell as much as 22%, the most since March 2001, and traded 15.76% lower at R62 at the close in Johannesburg. That pared the year’s gains to 10%, valuing the company at R12.8 billion.

The foreign-exchange loss for the six months through August was $10.6 million, Johannesburg-based Datatec said in a statement on Wednesday. The rand has weakened 17% against the dollar this year, the third-worst performer among 16 major currencies monitored by Bloomberg. The kwanza is 24% lower, the third-worst performer in Africa.

“South Africa’s weak currency is working against” Datatec, Keith McLachlan, fund manager at AlphaWealth Asset Management said by phone from Johannesburg. “Their trading update definitely didn’t meet expectations.”

©2015 Bloomberg News

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