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Shilling under pressure again after central bank action

23 September 2014, 08:47

Nairobi - Kenya's shilling weakened on Monday in a quiet start to the week's trading after the central bank intervened to support the currency by selling dollars in the two previous sessions.

A downturn in the tourism industry, after a spate of bomb and gun attacks along the coast and in the capital this year, has hurt one of the east African country's major sources of hard currency.

At 0752 GMT, the shilling was trading at 88.70/80 to the dollar, compared with Friday's close of 88.50/60.

"There definitely has been pressure on the shilling in last couple of days. (Central Bank of Kenya) intervention has propped it up pretty well," said Nahashon Mungai, a foreign exchange trader at Kenya Commercial Bank. "It looks like the shilling is losing a bit of strength again this morning."

Another dealer at a Nairobi-based commercial bank also noted the modest weakening but said the market was relatively quiet in early business.

The central bank intervened on Thursday and Friday after the shilling weakened to 89.45/55 on Thursday.

"They haven't made it clear what level they are uncomfortable with but it looks like a break of 89 is something they are willing to defend," said a dealer, who asked not to be named due to the sensitivity of commenting on central bank policy.

- Reuters

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