Rupee stays steady vs dollar
KARACHI: The rupee traded under slight pressure against the dollar in the local currency market following renewed dollar demand from importers last week. Leading currency dealers, however, kept to the sidelines amid lacklustre activities. Comfortable dollar supplies restricted the sharp decline in the rupee. So far in March, the parity on the interbank market hovered in narrow ranges between the high of Rs104.66/68 and the low of Rs104.74/76 while in the open market the rupee managed to recover against the dollar amid slight variations, trading in the range of Rs106.10/30 and Rs105.40/60 despite coming under pressure in the last week. According to the market expectations, the parity is likely to end March in the range of Rs105 and Rs106. The dollar rate differential between open and interbank markets remained fluctuated.
Meanwhile, on the interbank market last week, the rupee fell on persistent demand for the American currency from banks and importers on the back of higher greenback overseas. It hovered in a range of Rs104.74 and Rs104.75 in the first trading session after losing six paisas on the buying counter and also shedding five paisas on the selling counter against the prior weekend levels of Rs104.68 and Rs104.70. The continued its downslide for the second consecutive day. Trading activity remained suspended in the third trading session, being public holiday on account of Pakistan Day. In the last trading session, the rupee almost held its overnight levels against dollar, trading at Rs104.74 and Rs104.75 amid dull activities. The dollar managed to gain six paisas on the buying counter and five-paisas on the selling counter on the interbank market on a week-on-week basis last week. In the open market, the demand and supply of dollars remained moderate last week. The rupee lost five paisas in the first trading session, trading at Rs105.45 and Rs105.65 against the last closing of Rs105.40 and Rs105.60. Relatively lesser-than-usual demand from the corporate sector and no sizeable payments from national exchequer the rupee recovered five paisas and revert back to the prior weekend levels.