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Kenya Shilling Weakens Amid Rise in Dollar Demand

The Kenya Shilling weakened marginally against major international and regional currencies during the week ending November 28 following increased corporate demand for foreign currency.

Figures from the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) indicate that the local unit exchanged at KSh 102.54 per US$ on November 28, compared to KSh 101.48 on November 21.

Pressure on the local unit continued on Friday, November 29, attributed to end month dollar demand from merchandise importers and the energy sector.

At 1003 GMT, commercial banks quoted the Shilling at 102.80 per dollar on Nov 29th, compared with KSh 102.70 at Thursday’s close.

The CBK usable foreign exchange reserves remained adequate at US$ 8,748 million (5.43 months of import cover) as of November 28. This meets the CBK’s statutory requirement to endeavour to maintain at least 4 months of import cover, and the EAC region’s convergence criteria of 4.5 months of import cover.

Trading at the Nairobi Securities Exchange(NSE) improved during the week ending November 28, with the NSE 25 Share price index, NASI, and market capitalization increasing by 1.0 percent each.

Similarly, total shares traded and total equity turnover increased by 2.3 and 40.2 percent, respectively.

However, the NSE 20-share price index and total deals transacted, declined by 0.4 and 4.9 percent, respectively.

Turnover of bonds traded in the domestic secondary market increased by 53.6 percent during the week ending November 28.

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