COLOMBO, July 30 (Reuters) - The Sri Lankan rupee ended slightly weaker on Monday as dollar demand from importers surpassed greenback sales by banks, traders said.
The rupee, which traded at 159.90 rupees per dollar during the day, ended at 159.65/75 per dollar, compared with Thursday’s close of 159.50/60. It has declined 4.01 percent so far this year and had hit a record low of 160.17 on June 20.
“Today there was importer demand. Large importer demand, specially construction-related. No big exporter flows but there were some remittance (inflow),” said a currency dealer asking not to be named.
The stocks, bond and foreign exchange markets were closed on Friday for a public holiday.
Sri Lanka’s central bank governor, Indrajit Coomaraswamy, had said earlier that the rupee’s decline was driven mainly by factors outside of Sri Lanka and that emerging-market currencies were under pressure.
Foreign investors sold government securities worth a net 1.98 billion rupees ($12.4 million) in the week ended July 18, bringing the outflows so far this year to 31.6 billion rupees, central bank data showed. ($1 = 159.4000 Sri Lankan rupees) (Reporting by Ranga Sirilal; Editing by Sunil Nair)