Central Bank bought forex to slow shilling surge -governor

Kenya’s central bank has bought foreign currency to slow the strengthening of the shilling following elections in August, the bank’s governor said on Tuesday.

Patrick Njoroge restated the central bank’s flexible approach to the currency and said the purchases were to smooth out volatility.

“In the post-election period we have had to purchase forex to minimise the speed at which it (the shilling) was appreciating,” Njoroge told a news conference.

“We would end up buying so as to minimise the pace of appreciation. What happened is there were a lot of inflows into the forex markets. There is nothing else going on.”

Njoroge was speaking a day after the bank held its key lending rate at 10.0 percent.

On Tuesday, Kenya’s shilling slipped against the dollar on news that technology needed to hold repeat polls would not be ready by the Oct. 17 date set by the electoral commission.