"Since the oversubscribed sovereign bond issue, we see the rupee strengthening and the confidence coming in," a dealer said asking not to be named. The rupee closed at 131.60/80 against the dollar firmer than Thursday's close of 133.00/10, dealers told Reuters. Stocks slipped on Friday despite President Mahinda Rajapaksa, also the finance minister, meeting with top officials of the Colombo Stock Exchange, Securities and Exchange Commission, and brokerage firms to discuss an ailing market.
The Colombo Stock Exchange's main index edged down 0.06 percent or 2.89 points to 4,888.22. Treasury Secretary P.B. Jayasundera who attended the meeting told Reuters that there was discussion on need for governance and regulation predictability.
Sri Lanka's $13.80 billion stock market has fallen 19.5 percent since the start of the year on concerns over rising interest rates and a sharp depreciation in the rupee currency. The day's turnover was 284.2 million Sri Lanka rupees ($2.14 million), well below this year's daily average of 915.2 million rupees.