COLOMBO Dec 19 Sri Lanka's rupee
currency gained on Wednesday, helped by remittances and exporter
conversions ahead of holidays, while stocks were barely changed.
The rupee firmed to 128.40/50 to the dollar compared with
Tuesday's close of 128.70/75, dealers said.
"There were remittances from expatriates for their families
ahead of Christmas and there was also exporter conversions in
the absence of importer demand for dollars," a currency dealer
said on condition of anonymity.
Colombo Stock Exchange's main index edged up 0.09
percent or 4.84 points to close at 5,512.66.
Telecom shares provided the standout performances, with top
mobile phone operator Dialog Axiata and leading fixed
line operator Sri Lanka Telecom gaining 3.8 percent
and 2.1 percent respectively.
Analysts said fall in interest rates should attract more
investors to the stock market from January.
Total turnover was 464.3 million rupees ($3.61 million),
around half of this year's daily average of 891.9 million
rupees. Foreign investors were net buyers of 105.2 million
rupees worth of shares, extending the net foreign buying so far
this year to 36.6.94 billion rupees.
Treasury bill yields eased between 21-27 basis points at a
weekly auction on Wednesday in line with the central bank's rate
cut last week.,
($1 = 128.7500 Sri Lanka rupees)
(Reporting by Shihar Aneez; Editing by Simon Cameron-Moore)