KARACHI: The rupee stood firm amid lack of import payments, but dealers expect the local unit to stay under pressure for now. The rupee closed at 86.52/60 to the dollar, unchanged from Wednesday’s close of 86.52/60. It hit a record low of 86.83 on Monday. Dealers said dollar payments are typically higher in July and August because of stronger oil demand and debt payments. As well as oil payments, the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) stalled aid programme is also weighing the rupee down. In the money market, overnight rates ended unchanged at the top rate of 13.40 per cent, just below the new policy rate of 13.50 per cent, as the interbank market was short of funds, dealers said. They said there were scheduled outflows amounting to Rs85 billion ($981.9 million) on Friday.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 5th, 2011.