‘Big 5’ firms call the shots at Nairobi bourse

The Capital Markets Authority (CMA) has expressed concern over the overwhelming dominance of five of the country’s top firms at the bourse.

The regulator in a new report released yesterday said five companies accounted for two-thirds of the total market capitalisation at the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) in the three months to March, exposing the stock market to concentration risk.

The combined market capitalisation of the stocks of Safaricom, East African Breweries, Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB), Equity Bank and British American Tobacco (BAT), the Capital Markets Soundness Report showed, accounted for about 64 per cent of the market capitalisation.

“The top five companies accounted for between 63.7 per cent and 65 per cent of the market capitalisation, which is a heavy level of concentration on a few counters and exposes the market to concentration risks,” said CMA Chief Executive Paul Muthaura during the the report’s launch in Nairobi.

There are 67 companies listed at the NSE. The Capital Markets Soundness Report is a publication on capital markets stability indicators and industry risks.

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