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Morning Note: City Under Containment, What next for Investors?

Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta yesterday announced that some part of the country was going into a containment, a move aimed at easing the spread of the deadly Wuhan Virus. This news came as the country’s top analysts spoke on the new tax reforms which have been raised by the national treasury in the tax amendment bill.

On Monday, the Nairobi Securities Exchange gains lacked Monday’s momentum, and were moderate, mainly in the banking sector, even though global coronavirus cases kept rising and an economic crash on a scale not seen for generations looms large. Moves in the currency and bond markets were more muted, weighed by worries of containment of some towns in Kenya as a move too soon, after the dusk to dawn curfew and could drive a fresh wave of an economic fallout.

In the U.S a dispersion of Wall Street views on the outlook for stocks has been widening for a while, and Scott Minerd may have taken things up another notch.

Early Tuesday data on Asian markets showed that Asian stocks headed for their first back-to-back gain in two weeks on continuing optimism that the deadly coronavirus outbreak may be waning in some key epicenters.

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index climbed about 1% after advancing almost 3% Monday. Futures on the U.S. S&P 500 fluctuated between gains and losses after the index closed up 7%, at its highest since March 13. The dollar, a key barometer of funding strains during the crisis, retreated against major peers. Indonesia mounted its biggest-ever dollar bond sale, in another sign of easing stress.
 
For now, local investors keep eye on just how far the cases of COVID-19 will grow in the country before analysts asses the full economic impact of the virus on the local market. President Kenyatta has reiterated that the government is not willing to shut down the economy by imposing a total lockdown, however, he also said the option is not off the table and can be taken when necessary.

Our word to investors is that fundamental changes are happening, invest wisely & cautiously, economic recessions have had a blessing and also a hit and even brought down some of the world’s largest companies.