Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Central Bank of Kenya Holds Lending Rate at 18.00%

The Central Bank of Kenya maintained its benchmark lending rate at 18.00%, and held the Cash Reserve Ratio at 5.25%.  The central bank Governor, Njuguna Ndung'u, said of the decision: "This will ensure that the monetary policy measures in place continue to work through the economy to deliver the desired outcomes of reducing inflation, dampening inflationary expectations and sustaining exchange rate stability."

At its December meeting the CBK increased the interest rate by 150bps to 18.00%, after hiking by 550 basis points and raising the Cash Reserve Ratio by 50bps to 5.25%at its November meeting .  That move followed a 400bp increase of the interest rate to 11.00% at its October meeting, after raising 75bps in September, and previously increasing, and subsequently decreasing the discount window rate by 75 basis points to 6.25%.

Kenya experienced annual headline inflation of 18.93 in December, down slightly from 19.72% in November, but still higher than 18.91% in October, 17.3% in September, 16.7% in August, up from 15.5% in July, and up sharply from 9.19% in March this year, according to inflation data from the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics.  The Central Bank of Kenya has an inflation target of 5 percent.  

Kenya reported seasonally adjusted GDP growth of -4.6% in Q2, compared to +2% in Q1.  
A Kenyan Ministry of Finance official noted that Kenya is expected to record economic growth around 5-5.5% in 2011, and 6% in 2012.  

The Kenyan Shilling (KES) is about flat against the US dollar over the past year (having weakened by as much as 31% at the bottom); meanwhile the USDKES exchange rate last traded around 83.95


  1. Kenya is in the forefront in the world regarding doing business over the mobile phone, and it's a modern country in that respect, and not to be underestimated. Specially mobile phone banking has been popular. But this is probably well known. As a matter of course.

    1. Interesting comment, African countries as a whole have a much better demographic profile than many developed countries... I think the African continent will soon have its time for economic transformation.

    2. Africa's got to be the next big thing in investing... BUT the bigger question is when? there needs to be the right governance and there needs to be catalysts and flashpoints like multi-state unions, massive co-ordinated investment,etc...

  2. Bunch of idiotic comments