The following company announcements, scheduled economic indicators, debt and currency market moves and political events may affect African markets on Thursday. - - - - - GLOBAL MARKETS Asian stocks fell on Thursday after Wall Street marked its worst monthly performance in two years as the impact from new Federal Reserve chief Jerome Powell's hawkish-sounding comments reverberated across the broader risk asset markets. WORLD OIL PRICES Oil prices extended declines on Thursday after official data showed a larger-than-expected increase in U.S. crude inventories and a surprise build in gasoline stocks. SOUTH AFRICA MARKETS South Africa's rand weakened on bets of higher interest rates in the United States and worries triggered by another rating cut to state power utility Eskom by S&P Global Ratings. KENYA MARKETS The Kenyan shilling strengthened to its highest in a week on Wednesday, reversing its recent losses due to weak demand for dollars, traders said. KENYA INFLATION Kenya's year-on-year inflation dipped slightly to 4.46 pct in February, the statistics office said on Wednesday, down from 4.83 percent in January. NIGERIA Nigeria's people are getting poorer despite the country's slow recovery from recession, and economic reforms are urgently needed, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) said in a report seen by Reuters on Wednesday. NIGERIA TELECOMS MTN plans to list its Nigerian unit worth $5.23 billion by July in a debut IPO on the Lagos bourse and will raise fresh funds to reduce debt, according to pre-IPO presentation seen by Reuters. NIGERIA POLITICS/ The national executive committee of Nigeria's ruling party has endorsed President Muhammadu Buhari to seek a second term in an election next year, two senior party sources told Reuters on Wednesday AFRICA BANKING Africa has emerged as the world's No. 2 banking market in terms of growth and profitability, according to a study by management consulting firm McKinsey and Company. ZIMBABWE MINING Zimbabwe has the potential to supply 20 percent of the world's lithium, the mines minister from Africa's top producer of the alkali metal used in batteries for electric vehicles said on Wednesday.