NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
This year is shaping up to be one of the worst
for investors at the Kenyan stock market as prices of various
blue chips fall to a new low.
Several top stocks
have fallen by between 27 percent and 80 percent since the start
of January, highlighting the tough times for investors, who have
seen their wealth at the market eroded by at least 6 billion
U.S. dollars in nine months.
capitalization, which measures investors’ wealth, stood at 22
billion U.S. dollars on Wednesday, having hit 29 billion dollars
in April, data from the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) shows.
Topping the list of
stocks whose prices have dipped significantly is Uchumi, the
financially troubled Kenyan supermarket. Since January, the
stock has fallen 80.4 percent to trade at 0.009 U.S. cents.
River Mining Cement has declined 79 percent to trade at 0.05
dollars on Wednesday while battery maker Eveready fell 58
percent to stand at 0.01 dollars.
Others whose value
had been eroded include Mumias (50 percent), Home Afrika (53
percent), Kenya Power (49 percent), Kenya Airways (42 percent),
and Nation Media Group (41 percent).
Analysts have blamed
the decline of fortunes at the Kenyan bourse on foreigners
exiting a number of blue-chips.
February was the
worst month at the bourse, with foreign investors selling shares
worth 50 million dollars as they exited the market.
In May, investors
sold off stocks worth 40 million dollars and September, 30
million dollars, analysis of the market information indicated.
The fall has,
similarly, driven down other key indices of the market, with the
NSE 20 share index falling 100 points since January to close at
2,861.39 on Tuesday.