December 8, 2014 / 2:27 PM / 3 years ago

RPT-UPDATE 1-Pre-holiday rush for dollars weighs on Kenyan shilling

(Repeats to additional subscribers)
    * Importers buy dollars ahead of the holidays
    * Safaricom shares surge to new record high

    By Duncan Miriri
    NAIROBI, Dec 8 (Reuters) - The Kenyan shilling 
weakened on Monday as importers rushed to buy dollars to meet
their obligations ahead of the holidays.
    At the 1300 GMT close of trade, commercial banks posted the
shilling at 90.35/45 to the dollar, slightly down from Friday's
close of 90.25/35.
    "It is basically increased importer demand because of the
shorter week and also before people close for the holidays,"
said a currency trader with a commercial bank.
    Markets will be closed on Friday for the country's
independence day.
    Importers usually require dollars to pay for bringing
petroleum products and machinery required for industrial
production into the country. 
    The shilling is down 4.8 percent against the U.S. currency
this year after frequent attacks by Islamists scared away
tourists and their dollars.
    But its losses have been limited, compared with other
currencies on the continent like the South African rand, in the
face of a stronger dollar. 
    Some of its resilience has been attributed to the central
bank's interventions through the sale of dollars in the market
and liquidity management.
    In the stock market, the benchmark NSE-20 share index
 edged up by 9 points to close at 5,193.96 points.
    Shares of telecoms operator Safaricom jumped 2
percent to 15 shillings each, driven by demand from local retail
investors. 
    Daniel Kuyoh, a research analyst at Kingdom Securities, said
Safaricom shares had surged to record highs this month on the
back of a raft of good news from the company, including higher
earnings and the signing of a government contract.
 
    In the debt market, bonds worth 1.2 billion shillings were
traded, unchanged from Friday's volume.  

               ...........................Shilling spot rates 
                  .....................Shilling forward rates 
                           .......................Cross rates 
         ..................................Local contributors 
           .......................Central Bank of Kenya Index 
          .....................Kenyan Bonds contributor pages 
                          ...............Treasury bill yields 
        ..................Central bank open market operations 
        .........................Horizontal repo transactions 
         ,       ................Daily interbank lending rate 
              .............................Kenya Bond pricing 
             ..................Real time Africa economic data 
 <ECI & AFR> ...........................African economic news
          .................................NSE-20 Share Index
         .................................NSE All Share Index
             ...........................FT NSE Kenya 15 Index
             .......................... FT NSE Kenya 25 Index
  SPEED GUIDES:
                                    
            
  (1 US dollar = 90.3000 Kenyan shilling)

 (Editing by Pravin Char)

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