UPDATE 1-Kenyan shares close higher, shilling steady

Wed Mar 19, 2014 10:33am EDT

Related Topics

* Co-operative Bank touches all-time high
    * Shilling steady, agriculture sector flows to help

 (Adds stocks, bonds, market close)
    By George Obulutsa
    NAIROBI, March 19 (Reuters) - Kenyan stocks closed higher on
Wednesday, led by Co-operative Bank, which reached a
record high after reporting a rise in full-year profit and
proposing a bonus share issue.
    The shilling was steady and was expected to gain
slightly on agriculture-sector dollar flows.
    On the Nairobi Securities Exchange, the main NSE-20 Share
Index was up 8.06 points, or 0.1 percent, to close at
4,936.80 points.
    Co-operative Bank had earlier posted a 9 percent rise in
pretax profits and recommended a dividend of 0.50 shillings per
share. It also proposed a bonus share issue of one new ordinary
share for every six held. 
    The bank's shares closed 6.02 percent higher, at 20.25
shillings a share, after surging 7.3 percent to a record 20.50
shillings.
    "The bonus of one share for every six, and a dividend of 50
cents, that was a key driver for Co-op Bank today," Augustine
Misoka, stocks trader at Sterling Investment Bank, said. 
    In the currency market, the shillings closed trade at
86.45/55 to the dollar, the same as Tuesday's close.
    Traders had said during the session they were watching for
dollar inflows from tea growers, as well as any further mopping
up of liquidity by the central bank, for direction.
    "We expect to see agricultural flows, tea, which (should)
support the shilling," a senior trader at one commercial bank
said.
    The Central Bank of Kenya said the market was square and
that it was staying out of the repo market on Wednesday, the
second consecutive session it has done so. 
    When the bank soaks up liquidity, it becomes more expensive
for banks to hold onto long dollar positions, which helps to 
strengthen the shilling.
    On the secondary market, government bonds valued at 982.2
million shillings ($11.34 million) were traded, down from 1.3
billion shillings traded on Tuesday.
    At an oversubscribed primary sale, the weighted average
yield on Kenya's two-year Treasury bond fell to 10.803 percent
from 11.553 percent at the previous sale in December, the
central bank said.
               ...........................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:
                                    
            
  ($1 = 86.6000 Kenyan Shillings)

 (Reporting by George Obulutsa; Editing by James Macharia, Larry
King)
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