Business news feedKenya shilling firm vs dollar, tea sector helps


Posted on Thursday, 16 June 2011 15:45

Kenya shilling firm vs dollar, tea sector helps

June 16, 2011, 2:57 pm

NAIROBI (Reuters) - The Kenyan shilling firmed against the dollar on Thursday, helped by remittances from abroad and dollar proceeds from the tea sector.At 0851 GMT, commercial banks quoted the shilling at 80.40/50 compared with Wednesday's close at 80.60/70."It has slightly strengthened ... due to sales from tea traders," said Dickson Magecha, a trader at Standard Chartered Bank.Traders said it was business usual after Wednesday's ICC announcement naming three Kenyan cabinet ministers and a former police chief among six suspects behind the east African country's post-election violence in 2008."With the key event risk in the name of the ICC out of the way for now, we expect the market to trade on the interplay of demand and supply as year-end approaches," Commercial Bank of Africa said in a market report.Traders said the shilling was also getting support from Kenyans abroad sending money home.Kenya's central bank said earlier in the month Kenyans sent home some $58.5 million in October, close to September's $58.6 million and higher than $53.04 million in the same month a year ago.Remittances -- which reached a record $611.2 million in 2008 -- are one of the main foreign exchange earners for east Africa's biggest economy along with agricultural exports and tourism."Remittances are high and there is low corporate demand for the dollar," said a senior trader at another commercial bank.

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