Sri Lanka’s rupee hits a new historic low of 202/203 to one week dollar

Sri Lanka’s rupee closed at 202/303 in one week dollars on Wednesday dealers said amid record money printing, dollar surrender requirements and reserve outflows.

When the currency comes under pressure, spot trading usually stops and trading takes place in the short term forward market in spot next (value three days) or for settlement in a week.

Deals were done around 202.50 intra-day in the on week market. Dollar liquidity was tight for smaller banks, dealers said.

Sri Lanka has placed surrender requirements for exporters and remittances. A dollar surrender is a intervention by the central bank against the exchange rate peg which already weak adding new liquidity and taking dollars away from the market.

The rupee last closed in the one- week forward market at 199/201 to the US dollar on Tuesday and spot next closed at 200.75 to the US dollar.

With the dollar yield higher than the rupee yield amid money printing, forward premiums have inverted. The spot/one year swap premium was as much as 400 basis points negative, market participants said.

In the secondary market bond yields remained unchanged on dull market trade, dealers said. Sri Lanka’s debt office is offered 45 billion rupees of bills to be sold in an auction today.

The debt office failed to sell 42 per cent of the 45 billion rupees bills selling only 25.8 billion rupees. A bond maturing on 15.12.2022 closed flat at 5.80/90 per cent on Wednesday.