REUTERS: Sri Lankan five-day rupee forwards edged up yesterday as dollar selling by a state bank helped offset importer demand for the greenback, dealers said. The forwards, which act as a proxy for the spot currency and are called spot next, were at 145.20/40 per dollar at 0532 GMT, compared with Friday’s close of 146.20/50 per dollar. Dealers said the state bank sold dollars at Rs.145.00 per dollar, to keep the local currency steady.
“A state bank is selling dollars. It looks like they do not want the local currency to depreciate,” a currency dealer said asking not to be named
The Central Bank officials were not available for comment. The spot rupee, which has not been active since January 27, did not trade. The Central Bank has fixed the spot trading price at 143.90 through moral suasion, dealers said. The oneweek forwards, which have been active since January 27 and were hovering near record lows last week, did not actively trade yesterday for a third straight session, dealers said.
The rupee has been under pressure due to foreign investors exiting government securities and amid the country’s economic woes. Sri Lanka’s 2015 borrowing jumped more than 25 percent compared with the previous year due to high cost of refinancing loans, raised by the previous government without parliamentary approval, the finance minister said last week.