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Kenya private sector activity stronger in April

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Business activity in the month of April stabilized across the Kenyan private sector, according to the purchasing managers’ index by Stanbic Bank Kenya.

Additionally inflationary pressures supported a fresh increase in new order volumes. The Index also showed improvement as it stood at 50.1 in April, up from 49.7 a month earlier but below February’s reading of 51.3.

According to the report, price pressures had eased across most sectors surveyed apart from construction and agriculture.

However, wage pressures remained on the higher side as companies continued to hire staff and increase inventories as they anticipated improved demand.

The index also showed that outstanding business increased slightly for the third time in four months. Business owners remained confident with expectations towards output over the next 12 months continuing to recover from February’s record low.

Kenya’s inflation rate fell for the third month in a row in April to 5pc year-on-year from 5.7pc in March, data from the Kenya National Bureau of statistics showed.

The wholesale and retail sectors posted the biggest decline, with agriculture and construction being the only sectors that showed increased price pressures.

Growth forecasts remained strongest among service providers with the rate of expansion remaining modest due to slowed growth in the uptake of new work in April.

Business owners however expressed concern due to the ongoing floods noting that the second-quarter performance would likely be affected.

Allan Aoko
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