October 2, 2017 / 11:53 AM / 10 months ago

Sri Lankan rupee ends steady; remittances offset importer dollar demand

COLOMBO, Oct 2 (Reuters) - The Sri Lankan rupee closed steady on Monday as dollar sales by banks due to inward remittances were offset by demand for the U.S. currency from importers to pay for their purchases, dealers said.

The spot rupee closed at 153.05/20 per dollar, little changed from Friday’s closing level of 153.05/12.

“Today importer demand (for dollars) matched with remittances. Still we could see some remittances coming in,” said a currency dealer who did not wish to be named.

The rupee has been under pressure since January after the central bank stopped defending the currency and started buying dollars to build up the country’s depleted foreign currency reserves.

The island nation had seen 18 billion rupees ($117.61 million) of net inflows into equities this year as of Monday’s close, and 29.1 billion rupees worth inflows into government securities as of Sept. 27 this year, official data showed. ($1 = 153.0500 Sri Lankan rupees) (Reporting by Ranga Sirilal and Shihar Aneez; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu)

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