NAIROBI: Kenya's shilling fell to a new three-year low on Tuesday, weakened by concerns the central bank has wiped out some of its reserves and due to falling revenue from the tourism and tea sectors, while shares also retreated.
At the 1300 GMT close of trade, commercial banks posted the shilling at 90.30/90.40 against the dollar, weaker than Monday's closing level of 90.05/90.25 against the dollar.
"People are waiting to see if the central bank will intervene again," said Ian Kahangara, a trader at the National Bank of Kenya. He added the shilling had been negatively impacted by recent interventions that had wiped out some of its reserves.
The central bank sold dollars on Thursday and Friday last week to prop up the shilling, on both occasions offering dollars when the local currency was around the 90.30-level.
The shilling has weakened by 4.64 percent against the dollar so far this year, under pressure from a fall in revenues from tourism, a major hard currency earner that has been affected by a spate of militant attacks in East Africa's biggest economy.
In the stock market, the benchmark NSE-20 share index fell 0.2 percent to close at 5137.94.
Traders said the shilling still had a weakening bias after retreating on Monday after Islamist militants ambushed a bus and killed 28 people near the Somali border at the weekend.