Is There Coming Back For The Kenyan Shilling?

By Soko Directory Team / Published August 15, 2022 | 9:10 am




KEY POINTS

Sufficient Forex reserves are currently at USD 7.7 bn (equivalent to 4.4-months of import cover), which is above the statutory requirement of maintaining at least 4.0-months of import cover, and the EAC region’s convergence criteria of 4.5-months of import cover.


Kenyan Shilling

KEY TAKEAWAYS


On a year-to-date basis, the shilling has depreciated by 5.5 percent against the dollar, higher than the 3.6% depreciation recorded in 2021.


Shilling Hits The Lowest In History

The Kenyan shilling continued to depreciate against the US dollar to close the week at 119.3 shillings, a 0.2 percent depreciation from 119.1 shillings recorded the previous week.

The depreciation of the local currency was partly attributable to increased dollar demand from the oil and energy sectors against a slower supply of hard currency.

On a year-to-date basis, the shilling has depreciated by 5.5 percent against the dollar, higher than the 3.6% depreciation recorded in 2021.

What is ailing the Kenyan shilling?

High global crude oil prices are on the back of persistent supply chain bottlenecks coupled with high demand as most economies gradually recover.

Increased demand from merchandise traders as they beef up their hard currency positions in anticipation of increased demand as economies pick up.

An ever-present current account deficit due to an imbalance between imports and exports, with Kenya’s current account deficit estimated at 5.3 percent of GDP in the 12 months to May 2022 compared to the 5.0 percent within a similar period in 2021.

The aggressively growing government debt, with Kenya’s public debt, has increased at a 10-year CAGR of 18.2 percent to 8.6 trillion shillings in May 2022, from 1.6 trillion shillings in May 2012 thus putting pressure on forex reserves to service some of the public debt.

Is there any hope for the Kenyan shilling?

Sufficient Forex reserves are currently at USD 7.7 bn (equivalent to 4.4-months of import cover), which is above the statutory requirement of maintaining at least 4.0-months of import cover, and the EAC region’s convergence criteria of 4.5-months of import cover.

In addition, the reserves were boosted by the USD 750.0 mn World Bank loan facility received in March 2022 and are expected to be boosted further by the USD 235.6 mn  funding from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and,

Improving diaspora remittances are evidenced by a 6.6 percent y/y increase to USD 326.1 mn as of June 2022, from USD 305.9 mn recorded over the same period in 2021, which has continued to cushion the shilling against a faster depreciation.

In the recently released June 2022 diaspora remittances figures, North America remained the largest source of remittances to Kenya accounting for 59.1 percent in the period, followed by Europe at 18.2% while the rest of the world accounted for 22.7 percent of the total.

Related Content: Will The Shilling Be Back After Elections Or We Continue Blaming The Dollar?




About Soko Directory Team

Soko Directory is a Financial and Markets digital portal that tracks brands, listed firms on the NSE, SMEs and trend setters in the markets eco-system.Find us on Facebook: facebook.com/SokoDirectory and on Twitter: twitter.com/SokoDirectory

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