Pakistan News: The Pakistani rupee gained sharply on Tuesday to end at an 8-month high amid soft demand for the dollar from importers and healthy inflows.
The rupee <PKR=> ended at 85.24/29 to the dollar, firmer than the previous day’s close of 85.49/54.
“There were very few import payments today and most of the oil companies are quiet as well,” said a dealer at a foreign bank. “Going forward, we do not expect any immediate payment pressure,” said the dealer.
“In fact, healthy dollar inflows are likely to keep the rupee stable around current levels.”
Syed Wasimuddin, chief spokesman of the State Bank of Pakistan, said this was the rupee’s strongest closing since June 10, 2010.
A record inflow of remittances, strong foreign exchange reserves positions, healthy exports and a current account surplus were the reason for the gain in the rupee’s value, he said.
The stock market ended lower, led by oil stocks, amid concerns about Pakistan’s energy sector, where several companies are facing a cash crunch as well as falling global oil prices, dealers said.
The Karachi Stock Exchange’s benchmark 100-share index <.KSE> ended 0.53 per cent, or 66.42 points, lower at 12,360.94 on turnover of 94.36 million shares.
Dealers said trade was likely to pick up soon in anticipation of healthy corporate results.
State-run oil marketing giant Pakistan State Oil <PSO.KA> is scheduled to release quarterly earnings on Wednesday, and the MCB Bank <MCB.KA> will announce a performance report on Thursday.
In the money market, overnight rates ended little changed at between 11.50 and 12.0 per cent, and dealers said the market was eyeing the fortnightly treasury bills auction on Wednesday, for which the central bank has set a target of 150 billion rupees ($1.76 billion). – Reuters