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Markets

Rupee sees back-to-back gains against US dollar

  • Currency settles at 279.04 against the US dollar in inter-bank market
Published March 8, 2024

The Pakistani rupee recorded back-to-back gains against the US dollar, appreciating 0.09% in the inter-bank market on Friday.

At close, the local unit settled at 279.04, a gain of Re0.25, against the greenback, as per the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP).

On Thursday, the rupee registered a marginal improvement to settle at 279.29 against the US dollar, according to the SBP.

In a key development, Moody’s Investors Service (Moody’s) on Thursday upgraded the outlook of Pakistan’s banking sector to ‘stable’ from ‘negative’ as macro challenges and fiscal pressures ease.

“The banks’ solid profitability and stable funding and liquidity provide an adequate buffer to withstand the country’s macroeconomic challenges and political turmoil,” read the report.

Internationally, the US dollar headed for its sharpest weekly drop of the year on Friday as Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell sounded more confident about cutting interest rates in coming months.

Traders were on edge and early Asia moves small while waiting for US employment data later in the day that could confirm or confound market expectations for a US cut by June. Powell said the Fed was “not far” from the confidence it needed to cut rates.

The common currency hit an almost two-month high of $1.0954 in the Asia session - putting it back in the middle of a range it has kept for a year.

It is up 1% on the dollar for the week.

Oil prices, a key indicator of currency parity, rose on Friday, driven by growing demand in the world’s biggest consumers, the United States and China, while the US Federal Reserve gave a positive signal on the possibility of rate cuts.

Brent crude futures were up 0.7%, or 58 cents, at $83.54 a barrel by 0700 GMT. US West Texas Intermediate crude futures rose 0.9%, or 69 cents, to $79.62.

Both contracts were down slightly on the week so far, however, with Brent and WTI down 0.1% and 0.5%, respectively.

Data from the Energy Information Administration showed that US gasoline inventories fell 4.5 million barrels last week, and distillate stockpiles were down 4.1 million barrels. Both fell more than expected, in a sign of strong demand.

Inter-bank market rates for dollar on Friday

BID Rs 279.04

OFFER Rs 279.24

Open-market movement

In the open market, the PKR gained 1.00 paisa for buying and 4.00 paisa for selling against USD, closing at 279.10 and 281.70, respectively.

Against Euro, the PKR lost 1.06 rupee for buying and 1.01 rupee for selling, closing at 304.13 and 306.99, respectively.

Against UAE Dirham, the PKR gained 3.00 paisa for buying and 6.00 paisa for selling, closing at 75.88 and 76.57, respectively.

Against Saudi Riyal, the PKR gained 5.00 paisa for buying and 4.00 paisa for selling, closing at 74.10 and 74.80, respectively.

Open-market rates for dollar on Friday

BID Rs 279.10

OFFER Rs 281.70

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