Kenyans have saved over Sh. 1.7 trillion in bank current accounts. This is according to the latest date by the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK).
The data shows that savings in current accounts in the first seven months of 2023 grew by Sh. 98.1 billion to cross the Sh. 1.7 trillion.
At the same time, savings in fixed accounts hit Sh. 1.76 trillion in the same period.
The savings in current accounts, which are also referred to as demand deposits, attracted less interest earnings in comparison to savings in the fixed accounts.
Local commercial banks paid an average 3.97 per cent for savings in current accounts compared to the 8.1 per cent returns that were paid for savings in fixed deposit accounts in the same period.
Data from the CBK further shows an increase in money saved in foreign currencies.
In the January to July period, foreign currency savings in banks recorded a 35 per cent increase to Sh. 1.2 trillion.
This shift to foreign currency savings has been largely attributed to the depreciation of the Kenya Shilling that the government has been unable to halt. The Shilling haslost 19.6 per cent in value from January 2023.
The depreciation has especially been aggravated over the last one year. As at August 2022, the Shilling was trading at around 120 to the US dollar. It is currently trading at lows of Sh. 148 according to the CBK. However, local commercial banks are selling the dollar at highs of 155 to 160.