COLOMBO, Aug 22 (Reuters) - The Sri Lankan rupee ended steady for a sixth straight session on Monday as dollar sales by foreigners who bought government securities were offset by demand for the U.S. currency from importers, dealers said.
However, they said, importer greenback demand weighed on the currency.
The spot rupee ended at 145.50/60 per dollar, compared to Friday’s close of 145.50/55.
“There was some dollar sales by foreign investors to buy local bonds. The importer demand was also there and it was weighing on the currency,” a currency dealer said, asking not to be named.
“The central bank has been on the dollar buying side to keep the rupee steady.”
Central bank officials were not available for comment.
The spot rupee is usually managed by the central bank, and market participants use the forward market levels for guidance on the currency.
Since a $1.5 billion inflow from a dual-tenure sovereign bond issue, the central bank has largely not intervened in the currency market to defend the rupee.
Since the International Monetary Fund (IMF) approved a $1.5 billion, 36-month loan on June 4, net foreign inflow into government securities has jumped 28.5 percent to 295.7 billion rupees ($2.03 billion) through Aug. 17, the latest central bank data showed.
One-week rupee forwards ended at 145.75/80 per dollar, little changed from Friday’s close of 145.74/77.
Reporting by Shihar Aneez and Ranga Sirilal; Editing by Sunil Nair