UPDATE 1-Kenyan shilling holds steady, Safaricom lifts shares

Fri Dec 7, 2012 9:10am EST

* Shilling seen supported by Diaspora remittances
    * Safaricom accounts for 80 pct of traded shares

 (Adds markets close, stock)
    By Kevin Mwanza
    NAIROBI, Dec 7 (Reuters) - The Kenyan shilling held
steady against the dollar on Friday and was expected to trade in
a narrow range as volumes thin out ahead of the holidays. Stocks
recouped some of the previous session's losses.
    Commercial banks quoted the shilling at 86.00/10 to the
dollar at the 1300 GMT market close, the same level it closed at
on Thursday.
    "We see the shilling holding steady through the month of
December as most corporates prepare to close for the festive
season," said Bank of Africa in a daily report.
    Traders said they expected remittances from Kenyans abroad,
a key source of hard currency for the east African nation, to
underpin the local currency. 
    The shilling has been fairly stable this year, supported by
the relatively tight hold the central bank has kept on banking
sector liquidity. 
    At the Nairobi Securities Exchange, the main index 
recouped some of its previous day's losses, closing up 0.4
percent to 4,035.99 points.
    "The recent fall in share prices has attracted bargain
hunters," said Ronald Lugalia, an analyst at Afrika Investment
Bank.
    The main index had shed 2.8 percent of its value in the
previous eight sessions as the political temperature rose a
notch with politicians rushing to form alliances ahead of a
March presidential poll. 
    Shares in leading telecoms provider Safaricom,
which accounted for 80 percent of the day's volumes, rose 1
percent to 5.05 shillings as investors bet on growth in earnings
to buy its stocks.
    Safaricom shares have rallied about 70 percent this year,
outperformed a 28 percent rally by the benchmark index,
propelled by earnings growth and heavy demand for the shares
from foreign investors.
    In the fixed-income market, corporate and government bonds
worth 1.10 billion shillings were traded, down from 1.14 billion
shillings on Thursday.
               ...........................Shilling spot rates 
                  .....................Shilling forward rates 
                           .......................Cross rates 
         ..................................Local contributors 
           .......................Central Bank of Kenya Index 
          .....................Kenyan Bonds contributor pages 
                          ...............Treasury bill yields 
        ..................Central bank open market operations 
        .........................Horizontal repo transactions 
         ,       ................Daily interbank lending rate 
              .............................Kenya Bond pricing 
             ..................Real time Africa economic data 
 <ECI & AFR> ...........................African economic news
          .................................NSE-20 Share Index
         .................................NSE All Share Index
             ...........................FT NSE Kenya 15 Index
             .......................... FT NSE Kenya 25 Index
  SPEED GUIDES:
                                    
            
 
 (Editing by Richard Lough, ron Askew)
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