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FINANCIAL CHRONICLE™ » DAILY CHRONICLE™ » Rupee falls over 3% to record low; shares weaker

Rupee falls over 3% to record low; shares weaker

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Melissa Pereira


Assistant Vice President - Equity Analytics
Assistant Vice President - Equity Analytics
The Sri Lankan rupee fell more than 3 percent to a record low of 139.00 per dollar yesterday after the Central Bank effectively floated the currency by ceasing to quote its own reference rate. 

Currency dealers said the rupee stabilised at 137.50 per dollar after the Central Bank intervened at 139.00 levels. The slide comes amid weakness in emerging markets triggered by a devaluation of the Chinese yuan. It came with a delay, though, after the Central Bank supported the rupee before and after the general election on Aug. 17 that was won by a pro-reform coalition. 

The rupee has fallen 5.6 percent so far this year against the U.S. currency, and the Central Bank’s move came a day after it received $1.1 billion from a $1.5 billion swap agreement with the Reserve Bank of India. Sri Lankan shares were trading weaker in dull trade yesterday amid concerns that a rise in interest rates could turn investors away from stocks and into fixed income assets, brokers said. The main stock index was 0.13 percent, or 9.70 points, weaker at 7,235.80 at 0615 GMT. 

Turnover was Rs.284.8 million ($2.06 million). “Market is down with very low activity,” said Dimantha Mathew, a research manager at First Capital Equities (Pvt) Ltd. Results of the weekly t-bill auction on Wednesday showed yields on short-term government securities rose between 20 and 26 basis points, with the benchmark 91-day t-bill yield hitting a more than five-month high of 6.79 percent. 
Courtesy: Daily Mirror 5 September 2015

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