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Many countries are making a mint from commodities such as oil, copper and gold thanks to sky-high prices. But is that enough to give Africa a permanent boost? Probably not, because commodity markets are notoriously fickle and revenues can quickly be squandered.

According to a report by the African Development Bank, a third of Africans are now “middle-class”, defined as having between $2 and $20 to spend a day. A decade ago that was true of only a quarter of Africans. This change has occurred in a period of fast population growth among low-income families. This video talks about what some middle class Kenyans are now spending their money on.


1.What were some of the benefits for Kenya of having a strong and vibrant insurance sector, as mentioned in the video?

2. What were some of the risks associated with the growing industry of insurance?

3. What is driving the rise of life insurance in Kenya? What are the challenges?

4. What type of journal entry should an insurance company make to account for a whole life policy, where part of the premium goes to investment?


CNN Video. (2011). The Business of Death, November 28. (Retrievable online at

Staff. (2011). Pleased to be bourgeois. The Economist, May 11 (Retrievable online at