The rupee ended weaker at 90.94/98 to the dollar compared with Tuesday’s close of 90.90/99 and dealers expect pressure on the rupee to persist because of higher import payments. The rupee touched a record low of 91.28 to the dollar in January, pressured by worries about higher payments for oil imports and the country’s overall economic health. The State Bank of Pakistan cautioned this month that financing the country’s projected current account deficit would be a challenge. The current account recorded a provisional deficit of $2.633 billion in the first seven months of the 2011/12 fiscal year, compared with a deficit of $96 million in the same period last year, according to data from the State Bank of Pakistan. In the money market, overnight rates were unchanged at its top level of 11.90% amid increased liquidity in the interbank market.
Published in The Express Tribune, March 1st, 2012.