February 12, 2019 / 12:27 PM / 7 days ago

Sri Lanka rupee ends weaker on stock-related outflows

    COLOMBO, Feb 12 (Reuters) - ** Sri Lanka's rupee         
ended weaker on Tuesday, as banks bought dollars to facilitate
stock-related outflows and importer greenback demand, market
sources said.
** The stock market closed down as foreign investors continued
selling for the second straight session on Tuesday.
** The rupee closed at 178.30/40 per dollar, compared with
Monday's close of 177.75/90, market sources said.
** The local currency posted a weekly loss of 0.7 percent last
week due to importers' demand in the latter part of the week.
** It has risen 2.5 percent so far this year as exporters
converted dollars and foreign investors purchased government
securities after a statement from the International Monetary
Fund (IMF) and government's $1 billion debt repayment boosted
confidence.
** Investor confidence in Sri Lanka is stabilizing after the
country repaid a $1 billion sovereign bond in mid-January, the
central bank chief said last month.             
** The bond market saw inflows of 11.4 billion rupees in the
week ended Feb. 6, recording its third straight weekly inflow,
the latest central bank data showed.
** Worries over heavy debt repayment after a 51-day political
crisis that resulted in a series of credit rating downgrades
dented investor sentiment as the country is struggling to repay
its foreign loans.
** The rupee dropped 16 percent in 2018, and was one of the
worst-performing currencies in Asia due to heavy foreign
outflows.
** The Colombo Stock Index        ended 0.51 percent weaker at
5,930.21 on Tuesday, its lowest close since Nov 23.
** Bourse fell 0.3 percent last week, and declined about 1
percent in January.
** The turnover was 1.1 billion Sri Lankan rupees ($6.18
million), well above last year's daily average of 834 million
rupees.
** Foreign investors were net sellers of 261.4 million rupees
worth shares on Tuesday. They have been net sellers of 4.8
billion rupees worth of stocks so far this year, and 18.2
billion rupees since the political crisis began on Oct. 26,
2018.
** For a report on global markets, click here            .
** For a report on major currencies, click       
($1 = 178.1000 Sri Lankan rupees)

 (Reporting by Ranga Sirilal and Shihar Aneez; Editing by Rashmi
Aich)
  
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