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Sri Lankan rupee edges down on importer dollar demand
January 11, 2017 / 6:12 AM / 10 months ago

Sri Lankan rupee edges down on importer dollar demand

COLOMBO, Jan 11 (Reuters) - The Sri Lankan rupee traded slightly weaker on Wednesday as importer dollar demand surpassed greenback sales by foreign banks, dealers said.

The rupee has been under pressure due to rising imports and net selling of government securities by foreign investors, they added.

Rupee forwards were active, with two-week forwards trading at 150.55/65 per dollar at 0518 GMT, slightly weaker from Tuesday’s close of 150.45/55.

“There was (dollar) supply from some foreign banks, but the rupee is trading weaker today due to some importer (dollar)demand,” a currency dealer said, asking not to be named.

Last week, the central bank’s moral suasion prevented further decline even as the monetary authority signalled a change in its intervention policy.

Officials from the central bank were not available for comments.

Central Bank Governor Indrajith Coomaraswamy said last week that defending the rupee with foreign exchange reserves “doesn’t seem sensible” as it has always been followed by a sharp depreciation in the currency.

The spot rupee was also hardly traded, dealers said.

Sri Lankan shares traded 0.08 percent firmer at 6,157.42 as of 0527 GMT. Turnover stood at 62.5 million rupees ($416,944.63). ($1 = 149.9000 Sri Lankan rupees) (Reporting by Ranga Sirilal and Shihar Aneez; Editing by Vyas Mohan)

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