Egyptian pound remains steady on the official market: state

Published July 9th, 2015 - 01:50 GMT
The Egyptian pound was unchanged at 7.73 pounds to the dollar for the second time on Thursday's foreign exchange auction.
The Egyptian pound was unchanged at 7.73 pounds to the dollar for the second time on Thursday's foreign exchange auction.

Egypt's Central Bank kept the Egyptian pound steady at 7.73 pounds to the dollar for the second time on Thursday's foreign exchange auction, after depreciating it twice in a week.

The pound has dipped by 20 piastres since last Thursday, when it weakened to 7.63 pounds to the dollar, against 7.53 pounds. The Central Bank depreciated it again on Sunday's state auction, standing at 7.73 pounds to the dollar. 

It has nevertheless remained steady since, unchanged at 7.73 pounds to the dollar on Tuesday's auction.

The bank sold $40 million at Thursday's auction, reported the state news agency MENA.

Meanwhile in banks, the pound stayed at 7.83 against the dollar.

The Central Bank allowed banks to trade dollars up to 10 piastres more or less than the official rate in January.

On the parallel market, the dollar traded at 7.88 pounds, MENA reported, lower than 7.90 pounds quoted earlier this week.

Reuters meanwhile reported a weaker rate on the parallel market, with one trader saying the dollar was sold for 7.95 pounds and another saying the rate reached 7.97 pounds.

The pound's depreciation is not "concerning", Central Bank Governor Hisham Ramez said on Monday.

Two investment bank analysts told Aswat Masriya last week that the drop was an expected measure, given that the pound trades at a higher price than its fair value at a time when Egypt is trying to attract dollar inflows. 

On January 18, the Central Bank allowed the Egyptian pound to weaken in front of the U.S. dollar for the first time in six months.

It said the step was taken to eliminate the unofficial currency market, known as the black market.

In a second blow to the parallel market, the Central Bank capped on February 5 the amount of dollars that can be deposited in banks.


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