Rupee at record low on importer dlr demand

13 November 2015 06:30 pm - 0     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

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REUTERS - The Sri Lankan rupee struggled at its record low yesterday due to importer dollar demand while moral suasion by the central bank capped any further fall, currency dealers said.

The currency was at 142.00/20 per dollar at 0650 GMT, edging down from Thursday’s close of 141.99/142.05.

It fell 0.35 percent in intraday trading on Monday to a record low of 142.00 per dollar.

“There is importer (dollar) demand but there are not many sellers,” said a currency dealer asking not to be named.  Central Bank officials were not available for comments.

Dealers said importers are booking forwards as they are not sure of the budget while exporters are quietly selling in low volumes on expectation the currency will trade around current levels until some clarity emerges from the 2016 budget.

Investors are waiting for more clarity on economic policies from the 2016 budget announcement, scheduled on Nov. 20.

Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake said market speculation on further rupee weakening would be addressed once clarity is given through the budget.

The finance minister also said the upcoming budget will be “capital oriented” and will aim for revenue that is higher than recurrent expenditure.

Sri Lanka’s main stock index was 0.1 percent, or 7.24 points, up at 7,013.59 at 0741 GMT. Turnover was at Rs.520.2 million ($3.67 million). 

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