Investors Diary

Dear Investor,
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Thursday, December 20, 2007

The Changing Faces of Banks in 2007

Radical changes
The banking sector has come a long way and with mergers and acquisitions in the offing as well as the emergence of near financial supermarkets the future is indeed bright for our banks.

Most investors in banks stocks have often made a kill over the last few years with splits, dividends, bonuses and price appreciations having been witnessed.

New products
The banking sector is indeed undergoing radical changes and new products are being unveiled everyday target the larger populace as oppossed to the big-mans-bank syndrome that had been evident a few years ago. Banks are now literally going to the streets to hawk their wares and sell the loans to every would be buyer with little or no requirements at all.

Interest rates and competition
Interest rates have dropped drastically as banks strive to offer cheap products to borrowers for their businesses and other needs.Competition in the banking industry is indeed evident and every new day new banks are emerging.

New Banks
Most non deposit taking institutions are now converting into microfinances and finally banks in a matter of years and the number of banks is increasing by the day.

Banking stocks
The banking stocks have continued to soar to new record highs never witnessed before as investors both local and foreign rally to buy them.

Cross border trading
These banks have even dared to cross border to other regions talk of KCB in Uganda and southern Sudan where it continues to serve its customers. Others are savouring the region for strategic partners to inject new blood inform of liquidity into the system talk of Equity and Helios deal as well as Stanbic and CFC deal.

Stock broking
Other banks are craving for a piece of the stock market pie with ventures into stockbroking. NIC failed bid for the stake of the collapsed Francis Thuo (won by renaissance capital) has seen it partner with another securities dealer. Talk about slowly getting their.

Asset Finance
Asset finance is becoming the talk of town with considerably lower interest rates charged by banks for the same. This was started by NIC bank but now adopted by NBK, KCB, Equity, Family Bank, Stanbic and the list is growing.

...and the changes go on...

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