Sri Lanka rupee gains on exporter dollar sales; shares at 5 month high
Posted on 25 Jan 2014 8:47 AM
The Sri Lankan rupee traded firmer on Friday, heading for a second straight day of gains, due to exporter dollar conversions in the absence of importer demand for the greenback, dealers said.

However, the rupee is expected to fall in the absence of any intervention by the central bank, they said. The central bank said on Monday that inflows of $1 billion from a recent sovereign bond sale would be kept in reserves, contrary to market expectations. The spot rupee was at 130.65/68 per dollar at 0703 GMT, firmer than Thursday’s close of 130.73/76.

“There was no importer demand for dollars,” said a stockbroker.

The central bank had said on Jan. 2 it expected the rupee to strengthen in the medium term and any direct intervention in the foreign exchange market would be minimum. The rupee has gained about 3.4 percent since it hit a record low of 135.20 on Aug. 28. It lost 2.5 percent in 2013.

By 0704 GMT, Sri Lanka’s main stock index was up 0.32 percent, or 19.96 points, at 6,246.10, its highest intraday level since Aug. 19, Reuters reports.