REUTERS: The Sri Lankan rupee traded firmer yesterday due to dollar sales by exporters and on inward remittances ahead of the festival season, dealers said.
The rupee was at 143.15/25 per dollar at 0647 GMT compared with Monday’s close of 143.25/35.
“We were expecting selling to come in. We saw the selling which we have been expecting,” said a currency dealer, asking not to be named.
“We saw exporter dollar sales and remittances, the rupee will strengthen for the next few days unless state bank comes and buys again.”
Dealers said inward remittances for the festival season starting mid-December would take some pressure off the local currency in the short term.
Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe last week warned of pressure on the currency due to a China-led global slowdown and a possible Federal Reserve rate hike.
Sri Lanka is expected to seek an IMF stand-by arrangement to fend off a risk that its economy will be hurt next year by repercussions from events affecting major economies.
Sri Lanka has not made a formal request for International Monetary Fund help but the fund’s staff are looking at ways to help the island nation, an IMF spokesman said on Thursday.
The Central Bank on Monday conducted a repo auction for the first time since February 27 to absorb excess rupee liquidity. The bank accepted Rs.8.2 billion at 6.05 percent after receiving offers for Rs.10.3 billion.