COLOMBO, April 5 The Sri Lankan rupee ended
weaker in dull trade on Wednesday as late importer dollar demand
outpaced the early gains from inward remittances and exporter
greenback sales ahead of the festival season, dealers said.
The central bank cut the spot rupee reference rate
by 10 cents to 151.60, dealers said.
Rupee forwards were active, with two-week forwards
ending at 152.50/65 per dollar, from Tuesday's close of
"There was some late importer dollar demand. The market was
dull and the pressure on the rupee seem to be still prevailing
despite rate hike," said a currency dealer who did not wish to
The rupee has been under pressure due to dollar demand to
meet increased seasonal imports ahead of the traditional new
year that is celebrated on April 13-14, dealers said.
The central bank raised interest rates by 25 basis points
on March 24, for the first time in eight months, saying tighter
policy was a precaution against a build-up of inflationary
The rate hike was expected to help stabilise the rupee as
rising imports and outflows due to rupee bond sales by foreign
investors have exerted pressure on the currency, analysts said.
Foreign investors net sold government securities worth 950
million rupees ($6.26 million) in the week ended March 29. They
have net sold 64.2 billion rupees of such instruments so far
($1 = 151.7000 Sri Lankan rupees)
(Reporting by Shihar Aneez; Editing by Sunil Nair)