COLOMBO, June 19 The Sri Lankan rupee fell for a
second straight session on Thursday on dollar demand from
importers, dealers said.
The rupee was at 130.29/30 per dollar at 0727 GMT,
compared with Wednesday's close of 130.26/30.
"There is importer demand. But the moral suasion does not
allow any trade above 130.30. So, the spot next is active," said
a currency dealer asking not to be named.
Dealers said the three-day forward or spot next was traded
at 130.33/40 per dollar.
However, a central bank official at the International
Operations Department said there was no moral suasion.
"The rupee is trading between 130.20 and 130.30, and we
haven't seen any excess volatility. If there is any excess
volatility we will not allow that."
The central bank said on Wednesday it has absorbed around
$550 million from the domestic foreign exchange market this
The bank said in its monetary policy statement on Wednesday
that it did not see much demand for imports in April, while
private sector credit growth contracted 3.3 percent year-on-year
in the same month, its worst performance since January 2010.
The rupee traded steady or firmer till early trade on
Wednesday before import demand picked up.
The central bank bought dollars at 130.35 rupees on May 30
but started reducing its buying since then, allowing a gradual
appreciation in the rupee.
Central bank Governor Ajith Nivard Cabraal told Reuters on
June 6 that the rupee was facing appreciation pressure. The bank
was condoning the trend on a gradual basis to allow all
stakeholders to adjust to the changes.
Cabraal had said earlier that the central bank would keep
intervening in the currency market to prevent a rapid rise in
Dealers said the central bank's intervention has prevented
gains in the currency and they expect the rupee to face upward
pressure until credit growth and imports pick up.
Sri Lanka's main stock index was down 0.32 percent,
or 20.51 points, at 6,297.10 as of 0735 GMT. Turnover was 513.8
million rupees ($3.95 million), with 18.1 million shares
($1 = 130.2000 Sri Lankan Rupees)
(Reporting by Ranga Sirilal and Shihar Aneez; Editing by