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Kenyan shilling under pressure from demand for dollars

19 May 2015, 15:23

Nairobi - The Kenyan shilling inched lower on Tuesday, weighed down by demand for dollars by importers.

At 0645 GMT, commercial banks posted the currency at 96.45/55 per dollar, slightly down from the previous day's closing rate of 96.20/40.

"It is just normal demand that is picking up on the corporate side, bearing in mind we have started approaching the end month," said Robert Gatobu, a trader at Bank of Africa.

He said the shilling could weaken past the 96.50 level in the next few days as firms finish paying local taxes this week, enabling them to drive up demand for the greenback.

The shilling has broken through a series of fresh lows since Nov. 2011 this month, mainly due to demand for dollars, amid a steep downturn in tourism caused by insecurity. Tourism is an important source of hard currency.

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- Reuters


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