The rupee ended almost flat at 90.63/68 to the dollar, compared with Friday’s close of 90.61/66 to the dollar. The rupee has been supported recently by remittances from overseas Pakistanis, which rose by nearly a quarter to $8.59 billion in the first eight months of the 2011/12 fiscal year, compared with $6.96 billion in the 2010/11 period. In February, remittances totalled $1.16 billion. The rupee touched a record low of 91.28 to the dollar in January, dragged down by concerns over higher payments for oil imports and Pakistan’s overall economic health. There is also concern about Pakistan’s current account deficit, which widened to $2.952 billion in the first eight months of the 2011/12 fiscal year. In the money market, overnight rates fell to 9.10%, compared to Friday’s close of 11.90% amid increased liquidity in the inter-bank market.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 3rd, 2012.