Investors Diary

Dear Investor,
Welcome to sample a collection of my thoughts, research, financial advice, gut feeling and other works that i love to share with you from time to time.

If you are a stock market investor or otherwise and would like to invest in the Kenyan stock mart, the Nairobi Stock Exchange, you can always get free and helpful financial and investment advice on this site.

Further leave you comments and lets make the world of investment fun to operate.

More latters as we strive the world of investing fun , more fun and alot of fun.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas

Now that the year 2008 is about to end in a few days, it is now christmass time and the festivities are here with lots of merry making and celebrating in evey corner (unless you done celebrate one). Its time to look back at the year that was and ponder what we did achieve and what we missed.

Well as you celebrate this christmass may you 'jienjoy' as someone would say and take care. See you in the new year 2009 ready, roaring and rearing to go with new resolutions.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

We Live to Blog and Blog to Live

Indeed over the years many bloggers have emerged focusing on topical issues and i must say they make the world of blogging fun to partkae.

I am Proud
I must say, in Kenya there have been many bloggers that have emerged to share their thoughts, experiences, views, opinions, nairumours(as Bankelele would call it), research works and probably business ideas or still just connect with other like minde thinkers. I have indeed been proud to be part of this great team and moreso likeminded publishers focusing on the financial markets-money market, capital markets and foreign stock market trends.
I am proud of you all!!!

Our Voices
As bloggers, we’re all different, and a blog can only be what we as the individuals or groups behind the blog want it to be.Thanks to some of my colleages in this field who have inspired me from time to time, i have continually read and followed their posts on various issues and i must say a Million thanks to them and in expanding the tagged thread i wish to give some thumbs up to Bankelele who has tagged me, Kenya Capital Investment Group for providing a Kenyan view from the international arena, Kainvestor for his analytical viewsSa, savvy Kenyan,pesa tu and Riba Capital who have gone quite, concept, Emerging Africa Capital, and many other bloggers who are part of these great team.

Why i blog
I blog to share my thoughts,experiences and views on topical issues and more importantly about the financial markets.
I blog to part have my voice heard on various topical issues albeit in the smallesst of ways.
I blog because each new day comes with new challenges and as we try to make the world of investing fun to operate, it behooves us to shares what we've got-information.

What i Blog
I blog about Kenya as an emerging financial market in Africa that is dreaming to realize Vision 2030 to thrust itself to the next level of developed economies. I blog about finance and the financial markets alogside all the financial infrastructure-the money market and the capital markets. I blog about business and investments in Kenya, Africa and the world, I blog about portolio management and stocks-shares, bonds, treasury bills,financial innovations, derivatives and such instruments.

This christmas may you live to blog even more...

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Metropolis Welcome but Realization Daunting

The launch of the much publicized Nairobi Metropolitan that is set to create a rather expansive city with coverage spanning 15 urban centers is welcome as presented in paper but the cost to realize this dream city is a daunting task for all the stakeholders if the vision of transforming Nairobi into one of the regions business hub is to be a reality.
All these grand plans to transform the city of Nairobi into a major regional business and tourism hub known as the new Nairobi Metro 2030 Strategy, was launched in Nairobi Yesterday amidst current tough economic times for the lower cadre of society.

Ksh 33 Trillion?

When the plan was launched yesterday the announcement that this will cost Ksh 33Trillion way beyond our GDP and calls for major Foreign Direct Investment. However with Kenya being viewed currently as an emergent volatile zone with uprisings and tribal infighting every five years things might not be easy to attain this mark but nonetheless dream we must!

The Vision envisaged building the best-managed metropolis in Africa, providing high quality life as anchored in seven key result areas including infrastructure, security, opportunities for investors amongst others.The metropolis is expected to deliver a unique image and identity through effective place branding, building a competitive and deploying world-class infrastructure shall be realized.

Dream big, Dream for the Small
As the Kenyan government endeavors to lay the strategy towards this Vision 2030 there is dire need to reconsider thoroughly the issued affecting the majority of the populace including food, fuel, security, youth employment and many more as these will impact on the Vision 2030 and action is needed albeit NOW!

Financial Crisis Contagion Bites

After many months of denial the Central Bank might at last be bowing to the pressure to cut down interests rates and rather this might be an acknowledge that the world financial crisis whose epicenter was the USA is now spreading its ferocious wings to African emerging markets and Kenya in particular. This was hot in the heels of a denial by the acting finance minister that all was well?

Financial Contagion

It is indeed true that any crisis in the developed economies of the world will have their effects on African emerging markets and Kenya being reliant on Tourism, Trade, and Remittance by Kenyans abroad, things might not be that rossy for us.
A decision by Central Bank to lower the minimum amount of money that investors need to buy T-Bills is yet another attempt to bring down interest rates and prevent the economy from going on a further downward spiral, analysts said.

Th reduction of minimum T-Bills purchase 10 times from Sh1 million to Sh100,000, opens a new window through which ordinary Kenyans can be drawn into funding government debt and pits commercial banks against the Central Bank in deposit mobilisation and interest paid to depositors.more

Regulatory Framework
What does the developing global recession portend for the local economy and our financial markets? What policy interventions are required? What audit and regulatory measures must be embraced in navigating the emerging challenges?
These are the pertinent questions we need to consider as the effects of the global financial crisis continue. More

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Kenya's Vision 2030-a reality or not?

The media has been awash with news and information on the much touted kenya's Vision 2030 that is set to steer Kenya to the Status close to the First World. This vision has been 'dreamt' for us by the shennanigans and thinktanks at the Ministry of Planning and Vision 2030.

If you may not be aware of this Vision its pillars as espoused in the details documents is economic political and social facets. I don not wish to delve into the nitty gritty of the same but my concern is the economic pillar in the sea of current economic quackmire and recession necessitated by the Sub Prime Mortgage Crisis in the US.This crisis has led to the collapse of the world financial giants while others are still reeling from its effects as they beg for Government bailouts.

World Economy
Indeed the world economy has been on a decline from the giant USA to the expansive Europe things have not been going well.This crisis to say the least has spread to Africa and Kenya is no exception. As it is said when US coughs Europe catches a cold and Africa shall be bed-ridden. Kenya that is reliant on Tourism and Exports within its struggling economy, will indeed realize reduced business and the uptake of tourist resorts and Villas even during this festive season shall be significantly reduced.

Within the economic pillar of the Vision 2030 is the Business Process Outsourcing that has been seen to drive the Kenyan economy towards Vision 2030. This is indeed a new exposure for Kenya where companies in Europe and US alongside other developed economies od the world shall be utilizing the cheap services in Kenya alnd other emerging markets through outsourcing.
AS Kenya takes up th outsourcing bug the supply of business from the global economy may be reduced greatly due to economic crisis.

What next?
Although business process outsourcing is celebrated as a new ICT business to drive Kenya forward what next after the global Crisis?.Will Kenya still be the hub of business in East Africa or Will we perish with our Vision?

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

More Jitters in Banking Industry as MPESA Reigns

More jittersThe MPESA phenomenon ha continued to cause jitters and sleepless nights to many players in the banking industry who may have been lobbying the Finance minister to crack the whip.

Yesterday Hon Michuki, the Finance Minister joined the fray and in a rather stern statement called for an audit of MPESA by the Central Bank of Kenya on concerns about the safety of users’ money.

M-Pesa and Zain’s equivalent, Sokotele-Now Zap Brand have been operating outside Central Bank’s (CBK) regulation unlike other money transfer services pending the passage of a National Payments Systems Bill.

The money transfer system, launched in March 2007, has become popular with the unbanked population serving as a deposit account for some, hence causing jitters in the banking industry.

Money laundering
The phone-based electronic money transfer has been viewed as being prone to abuse by money laundering which is an illegal practice. Further concerns of the likely collaspse of the system have been rending the air and those shouting loudest are the banking industry players. Any guess?

Money Transfer
The MPESA daily money transfer service has been growing by the day and currently over 20B have been transferred through the System snce it was launched. Its registered account users now stand at over 4 Million and the number is growing by the day.

Parting shot!
The successful takeup of MPESA service has clearly demonstrated that Kenyans demands easily accessible, secure cash payment services in this fast growing emerging market and the regulators must take heed not to stiffle the growth with unneccessary and ill-advised regulations.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

M-PESA Revolutionize M-banking and threatens Banks

When Safaricom-Vodafone launched the M-pesa revolution many did not imagine that this new innovation in the Mobile Telephony industry would emerge to become a force to reckon with in the mobile banking industry.

M-PESA is a Safaricom service allowing you to transfer money using a mobile phone. Kenya is the first country in the world to use this service, which is offered in partnership between Safaricom and Vodafone. M-PESA is available to all members of the public, even if you do not have a bank account or a bankcard.

Today Mpesa is transacting hundreds of millions of shillings across the country enabling many Kenyans send and receive money in the most convenient of ways.

Infact this revolution has enable many unbanked kenyans who may have been averse to opening bank accounts maintain virtual accounts in the name of Mpesa accounts that ar also connected to their mobile numbers.

The company has made unparalled substantial profits in recent years and this is set to even rise tio unprecedented levels come the next fiscal years.

Market Share
Though the Kenyan market is abuzz with the entrance of new players Orange and Econet alongside Zain network, Safaricom is still the giant with amazing innovative team and this company is set to go places. Recently it launched a bill payment service in partnership with some corporate players and customers can at the comfort of their living rooms pay their bills. What morwe do one need.

Banks are shaking with every new day of Safaricom innovation.

Thought it shares have been doind badly at the bourse,this is partly due to the global financial crisis and partly due to oversupply of its shares at the market a miscalculation that was done by the transaction advisors during the listing process. However, the future of this company is bright and with foreign investors keen on investing in Kenya as an emerging market with alot of funds, This share is still a good long term bet. Trust me!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Wall Street Crisis

Dear readers,
After many Month of absence from the blog scene due to some unavoidable circumstances am happy to be back and rolling!!!! yepyyyyyyyy...

However and quite sadly the goings on at the World's famous Street has led to financial contagion across the other markets of the world and many investors are loosing alot of money in their cherished financial assets.

Short Selling
The emegence of this crisis fueled by the Subprime mortgage crisis led to panic across major markets. This neccessitated the drastic drop in the prices of vibrant and fundamentally strong companies across the globe.

Short selling
Short selling a phenomenon involving selling of borrowed shares in the hope of replacing them as prices continue to fall became the order of the day.
This did not augur well for most of the counters amidst rapid flow of information from one continent to the next.

Rescue package
As the Wall Street giants continue to wallow in financial crisis and illiquidity, the Fed government's rescue of Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and AIG demonstrated clearly that the financial turmoil continues on Wall Street and it is a matter of time before sanity resumes and investor confidence is restored.

Financial Contagion
Other major stock markets also tumbled with news of this crisis including Russia, Paris,Toronto, Germany, Asian Markets as well as emerging African markets amongst others.

The Kenyan stock market was no exception and neeedless to say that most of these Wall Street investors had ventured into the Kenyan market through the much touted Safaricom IPO and their crisis in the far west will impact negatively in our market.
AIG for example is a major player in the stock market investing substanbtial amounts for perosns in Kenya and also abroad and more especially those who are keen on investing in emerging markets.
The rescue package might have come as a sigh of relief but time will tell where the markets are headed despite the slight rebound. Whether south or north!

Financial Reforms
The onset of this crisis has laid bare the need for stringent financial reforms to protect investors assets from rapid erosion once fundamentals change though in the slightest of ways. Further these reforms would ensure proper management of our financial markets and regulations of all financial innvoations icluding derivatives that are widely traded across the globe though not fully appreciated and understood by many.

Political will
This is imperative if rapid reforms and proper infrastructure is to be set up to avoid continuous problems facing investors young or savvy both in the developed economies of the world as well as the rapidly emerging markets.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Safaricom Much touted IPO: Bits and Pieces

D-day At Last
Kenya's largest mobile telecommunications network service provider, Safaricom, will launch its initial public offer March 28 and closes on April 23 taking a total of 26 days. This offer for sale will give Kenyans amble opportunity to invest.

The government will offer 25% of the issued ordinary shares of Safaricom. The IPO will offer 10 billion shares priced at 5 Kenyan shillings a share, which implies a value of KES200 billion ($3 billion).

High Expectations
Thw Governement hopes to raise KES50 billion from the IPO, which will be used to finance development programs and hopefully to supplement the budgetary deficit that had been witnessed in the FY 206/07.

The offer will be split into two pools - domestic and international. The international pool will be open to institutional investors only. The price will be determined through a book-building.
Investors in the domestic pool will have to buy a minimum of 2,000 shares. This means that any Kenyan intending to invest (and i know many including mama mbogas) are keen to have a stak of this 'sexy pie' and probably make a kill when it comes for trading in may.

Market Share
Safaricom's estimated market share at the end of December was 80%. The company has nearly 10 million subscribers.

Morgan Stanley and with local investment bank, Dyer & Blair are the transaction advisors alongside other banks as citibank.

Official IPO site
The official IPO site is here

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

NSE will be most Volatile in 2008

It is now evident that if the current political crisis is not resolved as soon as possible the NSE that is often the barometer of economic growth is in for the most volatile period with suppressed activity despite entry of foreign investors into the market.

Since the year began, the NSE has shed Sh44 billion in market capitalization from a high of Sh851 billion at the beginning of the year to Sh810 billion as at the close of trading yesterday - a five per cent drop.
During the same period, equity turnover has declined by almost 30 per cent from daily trades worth Sh505 million on December 24 last year to Sh347 million at the close of trading yesterday.

Economic Slowdown
Economists had predicted a slow down in the economy pointing to a dip in tourism revenues, disruption of agricultural production and lower business turnovers in the wake of recent political turmoil.

Investor Confidence
Pundits have been quite to point out that a speedy resolution of the current stalemate and rejuvenated investor confidence is key to a speedy economic recovery and renewed momentum in the equity market.

Post Election Violence
The outbreak of post-election violence has eroded investor confidence in the market leading to some of the most aggressive sale of shares at the bourse with retail investors as the most active.

January/February Trades
The market was throughout January characterised by thin trades with retail investors - rushing to liquidate their positions in the short term - as the main sources of supply.

Institutional Investors
Battered investor confidence has seen institutional investors concede that any resumption of normalcy at the stock market depends on a speedy settlement of the political crisis.

The Aftermath of Election 2007 on economy

The Nairobi Stock Exchange will remain volatile for most of 2008 reflecting the turbulence in the political arena that has been witnessed since the announcement of the controversial December 27 General Elections.

Most companies are now bracing themselves for downsizing and other restructuring measures geared towards cost cutting and enhancing profit margins.

Reduced Profitability
The profitability that has been witnessed in most banks at the beginning of the previous years quarterly results may be no more and by and large greatly reduced.

Economic Growth
The economic growth rate although deemed to remain resilient may not be sustainable if the spate of violence continue into the next quarter of the year and the government revenue collections will be greatly hampered.

Pillars of Vision 2030
The pillars of Vision 2030 that had been lauded to steer Kenya into rapid economic growth phase including Business Process Outsourcing (BPO), Information technology, Tourism and telecommunication are now reeling from the effects of the post election violence.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Kenya Economy Reeling From Post Election Violence

The orgy of violence that has greeted Kenya's disputed election result has led to hundreds of deaths and forced tens of thousands to flee their homes.The post election violence witnessed in various parts of Kenya has indeed raised pertinent questions on the resilience of the economy to sustain long periods of civil unrest and violence.

Kenya's tourism industry, which brings in some $900m (£455m) a year and attracts more than one million visitors a year, is sure to take a hit after four days of rioting and ethnic clashes. Its relative economic success has been helped in part by its thriving tourist sector, with visitors attracted by its abundant wildlife and pristine beaches.Provisional figures for 2006 from the Kenya's tourist board said the country had received 1.5 million visitors for the year, a growth of 5.2 per cent.

The stalemate over the election results has cost the economy billions of shillings with the repercussions being felt across East Africa.

Bankers Analysis
Several bodies including the Treasury, Nairobi Stock Exchange, Tourism sector, and financial organizations have given their predictions and analysis of the implication of the destruction and sporadic violence that errupted in the country against a backdrop of controvesial presidential elections and delays in announcements.
The effects are indeed immense and portends widespread implication for Kenya as an emerging economy that has recently been rated the fast growing and most preferred by investors seeking emerging markets.

East Africa
The pinch on the economy is not only being felt locally with close to 4B having been lost but has spilt to Uganda, Tanzania Rwanda and Burundi where essential products were not forthcoming as fuel passing through Kenya was unavailable due to closure of roads and violence.

Central Bank of Kenya analysis
Kenya’s economy has grown steadily in the past five years with all indicators pointing out that if the trend was sustained, growth would hit 10 per cent. The economic recovery that started in 2003 has achieved some major milestones and laid down solidly the growth fundamentals. The growth fundamentals laid down have reversed growth decline that had taken years. It is true that the recent violence in some parts of the country could adversely affect the tempo of economic activity, but cannot destroy the growth fundamentals so far laid down. more

Foreign investors
Private investment has been behind Kenya's thriving economy. It has averaged GDP growth of 5% since 2002 and the economy is expected to expand by 7% in 2007 - rates of growth that are only beaten in booming Asian countries such as China.
Kenya's shilling strengthened by 9% against the dollar in 2007 as foreign investors poured into the country's stocks and bonds, but those gains were largely erased when currency markets began trading on Wednesday.

Equity Market
The equity market on the Nairobi Stock Exchange lost 40 billion Kenyan Shillings ($591 million) in value on its first day of New Year trading Wednesday. Kenya has attracted a large number of multi-nationals and is home to one of the world's fastest growing stock exchanges.

Positive Prospects
Expected planned sale of Safaricom shares might stir the market once again back to its feet .