Dollar continues to extend gains, glides past Rs206

In line with expectations, the rupee has plunged further and crossed Rs206 against the US dollar for the first time in the inter-bank market on Wednesday.

The domestic currency was available at Rs206.09 against the greenback, losing a fresh Rs0.93, a currency market dealer reported at 9.45 am.

This is the fourth consecutive working day of free-fall in the rupee, losing a cumulative 2.65% (or Rs5.32) to date.

The central bank has seemed helpless in controlling the speculative fall in the rupee as the domestic fair value is projected at Rs190 against the greenback by BMA Capital Executive Director Saad Hashemy.

On Monday, Finance Minister Miftah Ismail said abolishing the subsidies on petroleum products till July was imperative to prevent the country from going bankrupt, hinting at another increase in the prices of fuel that whizzed past records earlier this month.

Ministry of Finance’s former adviser Dr Khaqan Najeeb said: “Markets are uncomfortable due to the uncertainty about the IMF loan programme.”

The country should have initiated the process of reviving the stalled loan programme a few months earlier,” he added.

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