The Kenya shilling on Friday closed the week unchanged against the U.S. dollar even as retail importers raised demand for dollars as the month nears the end.

The local unit traded at 103.62, where it was on Thursday and Wednesday, with analysts noting the Central Bank had buttressed the shilling.

The apex bank quoted the shilling at 103.63 Friday, noting that it was stable at it stood at the same level at the close of Thursday.

On the other hand, commercial banks operating in the East African nation placed the value of the shilling to the dollar at between 103.55 and 103.75, same as it was on Thursday as traders from the financial institutions noted oil importers had raised demand for the dollar.

Similarly, the shilling held steady against the British pound to close at 131.21 from 131.31 on Thursday. The shilling had appreciated against the pound nearly 1 percent on Wednesday but lost momentum on Thursday.

The Central Bank has slightly over 8 billion dollars in forex reserves which it sells part of it to support the shilling in case it faces pressure from international currencies.

Similarly, according to Cytonn, a Nairobi-based investment firm, Kenya has a precautionary credit facility of 1.5 billion dollars from International Monetary Fund, which it can utilise to stem the fall of the shilling in case of increased dollar demand from importers. Enditem

Source: Xinhua/NewsGhana.com.gh