Equity turnover at the Kenyan bourse fell 6.6 percent in 2020 hurt by effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, which saw foreign investors who account for the biggest percentage of trading, exit the market.
The turnover fell to 151 billion shillings (about 1.4 billion U.S. dollars), from 1.5 billion dollars in 2019, data from the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) released on Monday shows.
Save for a few stocks like Safaricom, Kenya’s leading telecom, prices of the rest of the stocks declined by up to 36 percent.
All the key indices of the market declined with the benchmark NSE 20 share index falling 29.6 percent.
During the year, foreign investors turned net sellers, with a net outflow of 280.9 million dollars.
Analysts attributed the foreign investor outflow to the COVID-19 pandemic, which saw an increased flight from the equities’ market as investors sought safe-havens.
However, as the pandemic battered the equities market, the secondary bond market at the Nairobi bourse recorded increased activity with the turnover rising by 7.1 percent in 2020 to 6.1 billion dollars from 5.7 billion dollars in 2019.
The surge is attributed to local institutional investors increasing their allocation to treasury bonds as they sought stable returns during the pandemic, after increased volatility in other asset classes. Enditem