Treasury to expand cash limit in second M-Akiba offer

Treasury seeks to raise the ceiling on how much investors can buy on the mobile-based Government bond when the second offer of Sh4.85 billion is launched this month.

When the maiden Sh150 million bond was launched in March, investors could only put in between the minimum Sh3,000 and maximum Sh140,000 a day.

Sources say investors will be able to exceed that daily limit when the second tranche of the M-Akiba bond hits the capital markets in two weeks as the Treasury targets high sales.

“We are talking to the telecom providers to see whether the limits can be increased,” said the source who did not want to be named as they were not authorised to speak for the Treasury.

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“The tentative date is June 27, but it has to be before the elections,” the source said.

The move to expand the band may have been informed by results of the pilot bond that saw an average of Sh26,359 put in the Government paper. This meant that most of the buyers were not small retail investors as targeted by Treasury.

The bids ranged between Sh3,000 and Sh1.13 million from a total of 5,692 investors.

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Treasury data indicated that 102,632 people registered on the M-Akiba mobile platform, but only 5.5 per cent of them actually invested in the inaugural offer.

Safaricom’s M-Pesa platform handled Sh142 million of the total amount while Airtel Money transacted Sh8 million, underlining Safaricom’s dominance of the mobile money business.

The M-Akiba offer aims to increase savings as well as allow ordinary Kenyans to put their money into a worthwhile investment.

reviously, investors had to part with a minimum of Sh50,000 for Treasury bonds and Sh100,000 for Treasury bills. [Otiato Guguyu]

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