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Kenya Shilling Strengthens as Dollar Demand Drops on Christmas

Dec. 24 (Bloomberg) -- Kenya’s shilling advanced as businesses closed their operations for the year ahead of the Christmas holiday.

The currency of East Africa’s biggest economy appreciated as much as 0.1 percent to 85.86 shillings a dollar and traded at 85.90 as of 1:46 p.m. in Nairobi, the capital.

“Basically because of the holiday season there is less demand for dollars,” David Micheke, a research analyst at Nairobi-based Winton Investment Services Ltd., said in a phone interview.

Kenya’s statistics agency is due to release third-quarter economic data today. The economy expanded 3.4 percent in the second quarter.

Uganda’s shilling declined 0.6 percent to 2,660 per dollar, set for the lowest in more than a week, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Tanzania’s currency strengthened for a fifth day, gaining 0.3 percent to trade at 1,575 per dollar.

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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