Sri Lanka rupee edges lower

Apr 25, 2012 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s rupee was quoted at a new low of 132.80/133.20 against the US dollar edging down to a new low in mid morning trade Wednesday amid some buying pressure, dealers said. Dealers said trades were seen around 132.80/85 levels, down from 132.20 a day earlier as some exporters held back and importers covered positions.

In money markets gilt backed repos were quoted at 8.60/70 percent levels and call money at 9.40/50 percent.

Excess liquidity in money markets dropped halved to 15 billion rupees Tuesday and the monetary authority has announced an auction to mop up 8.0 billion rupees Wednesday, dealers said.

Analysts say more aggressive open market operations to drain liquidity, limiting cash for new loans and keep overnight rates near the recently hiked policy rate of 9.75 percent will help strengthen the currency.

Positive liquidity levels may indicate a slowing down of credit giving more room to support the rupee with monetary policy, analysts said.