Markets

Rupee remains stable against US dollar

  • Currency settles at 279.11 against the US dollar
Published February 29, 2024

The Pakistani rupee remained largely stable against the US dollar in the inter-bank market on Thursday.

At close, the local unit settled at 279.11, a gain of Re0.01, against the greenback, as per the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP).

On Wednesday, the rupee registered a marginal gain to settle at 279.12 against the US dollar, according to the SBP.

In a key development, it was learnt that the Pakistan Muslim League (PML-N) led coalition government may be reluctant to accept a non-party technocrat as finance minister.

This was revealed in background interaction with senior members of the party who added that while there is little likelihood of stakeholders agreeing to Ishaq Dar serving as the country’s finance minister for the fifth time given the damage he inflicted on the economy due to his flawed policies yet a compromise on another PML-N loyalist is possible.

Globally, the US dollar was firm and the yen was headed for a monthly loss in the lead up to US inflation data that could ruffle the interest rate outlook, while bitcoin surged above $60,000.

Bitcoin is on a tear and topped $63,000 overnight as it rides a wave of cash rushing to new US bitcoin exchange-traded funds.

It is up more than 45% this month, its largest gain since December 2020 and a record high above $69,000 is within sight.

The Federal Reserve’s favoured measure of inflation - the core personal consumption expenditures (PCE) price index - is due later on Thursday and forecasts are for a rise of 0.4%.

The US dollar index is up 0.3% to 103.92.

Oil prices, a key indicator of currency parity, fell on Thursday after a larger-than-expected build in US crude stockpiles stoked worries about slow demand, while signs that US interest rates could remain elevated added to pressure.

Brent crude futures for April fell 43 cents, or 0.5%, to $83.25 a barrel by 0830 GMT, after rising 3 cents in the previous session.

The April contract expires on Thursday and the more active May contract was down 33 cents at $81.82.

US West Texas Intermediate crude futures were down 26 cents, or 0.3%, to $78.28 a barrel.

Inter-bank market rates for dollar on Thursday

BID                            Rs 279.11

OFFER                      Rs 279.31

Open-market movement

In the open market, the PKR gained 4.00 paisa for buying and remained unchanged for selling against USD, closing at 279.45 and 282.04, respectively.

Against Euro, the PKR lost 37.00 paisa for buying and gained 73.00 paisa for selling, closing at 301.41 and 304.25, respectively.

Against UAE Dirham, the PKR gained 1.00 paisa for buying and remained unchanged for selling, closing at 75.97 and 76.70, respectively.

Against Saudi Riyal, the PKR remained unchanged for buying and lost 1.00 paisa for selling, closing at 74.20 and 74.91, respectively.

Open-market rates for dollar on Thursday

BID                            Rs 279.45

OFFER                      Rs 282.04

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