COLOMBO Oct 18 The Sri Lankan rupee fell on
Tuesday on importer dollar demand in the absence of central bank
intervention, said dealers.
Rupee forwards were active, with the spot-next at
147.20/30 per dollar as of 0752 GMT, compared with its previous
close of 147.00/05.
The spot rupee was quoted at 146.90/95 per dollar,
but hardly traded. It was steady last week after two weeks of
The spot rupee is usually managed by the central bank, and
market participants use the forward market levels for guidance
on the currency.
"There was importer (dollar) demand and traders were
reluctant to trade spot below 146.90 because the central bank
(last week) prevented its trading below this level. But the
central bank was not seen today," said a currency dealer, asking
not to be named.
The central bank has been buying dollars from the market to
accumulate reserves to meet targets set by the International
Monetary Fund under a $1.5-billion loan deal, dealers said.
Officials at the central bank were not available for
Dealers said they expected the rupee to remain under
pressure due to seasonal imports.
Sri Lankan shares were lower, heading for a seventh straight
fall, with the benchmark Colombo stock index down 0.06
percent at 6,448.60 as of 0757 GMT. Turnover stood at 255.9
million rupees ($1.75 million).
($1 = 146.3700 Sri Lankan rupees)
(Reporting by Shihar Aneez; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)