KARACHI: The rupee fared relatively better after the US Federal Reserve announced raising the key interest rate during the week with the local currency ending 1.2% lower against the US dollar.
The rupee lost value in four of the five sessions, inching precariously close to its all-time low in the inter-bank market, before finally ending a 15-session losing streak to settle at 239.65 on Friday.
The rupee is likely to remain under pressure as inflows announced by friendly nations have not materialised yet with the tranche from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) the only incoming funds having been deposited with the central bank so far.
During the week, the State Bank of Pakistan reported a current account deficit of $703 million in August 2022 compared to $1.2 billion in July 2022. However, moving forward, the import bill could rise in the wake of devastating floods in Pakistan, putting pressure on the current account. Foreign exchange reserves held by the SBP were also reported to be $278 million lower, clocking in at $8.35 billion as of September 16, 2022.
On Friday, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif was reported to have sought debt relief while a United Nations (UN) policy memo also stated that Pakistan should suspend international debt repayments and restructure loans with creditors after the recent floods. Debt relief, if offered, is likely to take some pressure off the rupee, but is likely to be temporary, say experts.
In the open market, the PKR lost 3 rupees for buying and 3.40 rupees for selling against USD, closing at 242 and 244.40, respectively.
Against Euro, the PKR gained 7 rupees for buying and 6.65 rupees for selling, closing at 235 and 237.35, respectively.
Against UAE Dirham, the PKR gained 2.10 rupees for buying and 1.95 rupees for selling, closing at 65.90 and 66.55, respectively. Against Saudi Riyal, the PKR lost 25 paisas for buying and 40 paisas for selling closing, at 64.25 and 64.90, respectively.
Weekly Interbank market rates for dollar
Bid Close Rs. 239.75
Offer Close Rs. 240.75
Bid Open Rs. 237.00
Offer Open Rs. 238.00
Weekly Open market rates for dollar
Bid Close Rs. 242.00
Offer Close Rs. 244.40
Bid Open Rs. 239.00
Offer Open Rs. 241.00
Copyright Business Recorder, 2022