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XINHUA NEWS SERVICE REPORTS FROM THE AFRICAN CONTINENT

 

Political uncertainty pushes Kenya shilling further down

NAIROBI (Xinhua) -- The Kenya shilling lost more ground against the U.S. dollar on Thursday as political uncertainty persisted in the East African nation.

The Supreme Court on Thursday continued to hear petitions challenging President Uhuru Kenyatta’s win in Oct. 26 polls, and its six judges would make a ruling on Monday.

The shilling traded at an average of 103.75 to the dollar, a 0.06 percent decline from Wednesday’s 103.70.

The Central Bank of Kenya quoted the shilling at 103.74 to the dollar, down from 103.70 in the previous session. On Wednesday, the shilling weakened against the dollar by 0.09 percent.

Similarly, the East African nation’s commercial banks placed the shilling at between 103.60 and 103.80, down from 103.55 and 103.75 on Wednesday.

Traders in the commercial banks blamed the decline of the currency to the Supreme Court petitions, which have led to political uncertainty in the country keeping away investors.

There has also been declining inflows from several sectors among them agriculture putting strain on the shilling amid rising dollar demand.

However, Kenya’s forex exchange reserves, according to the apex bank, stand at 7.1 billion dollars, which are enough to cushion the shilling from further drop.

           

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