Sri Lanka rupee down on importer dollar demand

rupee

Oct 24, 2016 (Reuters) – The Sri Lankan rupee edged down on Monday due to dollar demand by importers, but moral suasion by the central bank discouraged trading in the spot currency market, said dealers.

Rupee forwards were active, with the spot-next at 147.90/95 per dollar as of 0801 GMT, down from its previous close of 147.60/70.

The spot rupee was quoted at 146.90/95 per dollar, but there were hardly any trades.

“We see the central bank’s instruction on the sport rupee. But the spot-next is traded without any intervention,” a currency dealer said, asking not to be named.

The spot rupee is usually managed by the central bank, and market participants use the forward market levels for guidance on the currency.

Officials from the central bank were not available for comment.

Dealers said the market was waiting for some direction from the national budget due on Nov. 10.

Sri Lankan shares fell, with the benchmark Colombo stock index 0.3 percent weaker at 6,428.07 as of 0805 GMT. Turnover stood at 263.2 million rupees ($1.79 million).