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Housing Finance Jumps Most in 3 Weeks on Bonds: Nairobi Mover

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Sept. 24 (Bloomberg) -- Housing Finance Ltd., Kenya’s only publicly traded mortgage lender, jumped the most in more than three weeks after saying it would begin selling 3 billion shillings ($35.3 million) of bonds on Oct. 1 to build new homes.

The stock advanced 1.9 percent to 13.65 shillings by the close in the capital, Nairobi, the biggest gain since Aug. 31.

The bond sale will close Oct. 12, Housing Finance said in an e-mailed statement today. The company raised 7 billion shillings from a 2010 bond issue, and this is the second portion of the 10 billion shillings it has regulatory approval to sell.

About 200,000 housing units are required annually in Kenya’s urban areas and only about 50,000 units are developed every year, Managing Director Frank Ireri said in the statement, citing Finance Ministry data.

“These bonds could be a huge step from the company because they are coming into a segment which no one is touching, the middle- and low-income housing segment,” Rufus Mwanyasi, head trader at Nairobi-based Canaan Capital, said in a phone interview today.

In April, the European Investment Bank agreed to loan Housing Finance 2.2 billion shillings and London-based Ghana International Bank loaned it $10 million in June.

To contact the reporter on this story: Eric Ombok in Nairobi at eombok@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Shaji Mathew at shajimathew@bloomberg.net

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