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Kenyan shilling steady, supported by high-yielding debt

Kenyan shilling steady, supported by high-yielding debtNAIROBI: Kenya’s shilling was little changed on Wednesday, with traders expecting the currency stay supported by inflows from foreign investors buying into high-yielding government debt.

At 0850 GMT, commercial banks quoted the shilling at 101.90/102.00 to the dollar, barely changed from Tuesday’s close of 101.95/102.05.

“It’s been very quiet this morning but we believe there is still further appetite in the market for placing money in T-bills,” said one Nairobi-based trader.

The shilling, down about 12.6 percent against the dollar this year, has firmed in recent weeks due to inflows of dollars from offshore investors chasing high-yielding government debt.

Traders say the local currency was likely to stay supported as long as the yields on short-term Treasury bills remained elevated. There are debt auctions scheduled for later today and on Thursday.

Yields on the benchmark 91-day paper slipped at last week’s auction to 19.471 percent but remain far above usual levels.

Yields on the 182 and 364-day Treasury bills were above 21 percent at last week’s auction.

Copyright Reuters, 2015

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