Sri Lanka rupee opens weaker, bond yields fall
ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s rupee opened weaker at 176.55/65 to the US dollar in the spot market on Wednesday, while bond yields fell and stocks opened 0.21 percent higher on buying interest, market participants said.
The rupee closed at 176.30/40 to the greenback on Tuesday.
Colombo’s All Share Price Index (ASPI) gained 11.26 points to 5,302.54, and the S&P SL20 of more liquid stocks gained 0.80 percent or 19.80 to 2,485.95 in the first half hour of trading.
Market turnover was 10.4 million rupees, with 31 stocks gaining and 12 declining.
Commercial Leasing and Finance was trading 0.30 cents up at 2.60 rupees, Sri Lanka Telecom was flat at 23.50 rupees and Softlogic Life Insurance was up 1.40 rupees to 35.40 rupees, contributing to the ASPI gain.
In gilts, the state debt office will be issuing 20 billion rupees in bills later in the day.
The state will sell 2.5 billion rupees in 3-month bills, 4.5 billion rupees in 6-month bills and 13 billion rupees in 12-month bills.
At the auction last Wednesday, 12-month bill rates fell 26 basis points to 9.18 percent. Over the past three auctions, 12-month yields have fallen from 9.91 percent.
Banks have been buying gilts heavily, as private credit growth fell amid a rise in non-performing loans, and the central bank injecting liquidity into money markets.
In the secondary market, yields eased with low activity, dealers said.
A bond maturing on 15.12.2021 was quoted at 9.45/55 percent on Wednesday, falling from 9.55/65 percent at Tuesday’s close.
A bond maturing on 15.03.2023 was quoted at 9.90/95 percent, down from 10.05/15 percent.
A bond maturing on 15.03.2024 was quoted at 9.97/02 percent, falling from 10.10/15 percent.
A bond maturing on 01.08.2026 was quoted at 10.23/28 percent, falling from 10.35/40 percent.
A bond maturing on 15.01.2027 was quoted at 10.28/35 percent on Wednesday, down from Tuesday’s 10.40/45 percent.
A 10-year bond maturing on 01.05.2029 was quoted at 10.55/60 percent, falling from 10.60/70 percent. (Colombo, 21 May, 2019)