Pakistan’s rupee ended the week on a losing note after a marginal 0.03% drop against the US dollar in the inter-bank market on Saturday.
The inter-bank market is now open six days a week after the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) revised its working schedule earlier.
As per the SBP, the rupee closed at 186.75 after a day-on-day depreciation of 5 paisas, or 0.03%. The rupee lost around 2.8% of its value during the week, as it declined in the first four sessions, before registering a gain of 0.14% on Friday.
The fall in rupee comes the same day Pakistan reported a current account deficit of over $1 billion in March.
Rupee’s losing streak ends, currency appreciates 0.14% against USD
Oil prices, a key determinant of currency parity, ended the week with a loss of nearly 5%, on the prospect of weaker global growth, higher interest rates, and COVID-19 lockdowns in China hurting demand even as the European Union considers a ban on Russian oil that would tighten supply.
However, despite the drop in oil prices, the commodity remains well above $100 per barrel, and is still expensive for the cash-strapped South Asian country, which has seen its foreign exchange reserves falter to $10.8 billion amid debt repayments and surge in import bill.
“The only thing that is hurting us internationally because of the Ukraine shock is the oil prices,” admitted Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue Miftah Ismail, while addressing the Atlantic Council in Washington.
Miftah is on a crucial visit to the United States to meet International Monetary Fund (IMF) officials, for the revival of its $6-billion Extended Fund Facility (EFF), a programme that was put on hold with the change in government.
Experts have regularly stated that the revival of the IMF programme is crucial for bringing stability to Pakistan’s markets.
Inter-bank market rates for dollar on Saturday
BID Rs 186
OFFER Rs 186.50
In the open market, however, the PKR gained 25 paisas for buying while remaining unchanged for selling against USD, closing at 186.25 and 187.50, respectively.
Against Euro, the PKR gained one rupee for buying and 1.50 rupees for selling, closing at 199 and 200.50, respectively.
Against Saudi Riyal, the PKR gained 10 paisas for both buying and selling, closing at 49.10 and 49.60, respectively.
Open-market rates for dollar on Saturday
BID Rs 186.25
OFFER Rs 187.50