KARACHI: The rupee fell 94 paisas versus the dollar on Thursday, reaching an all-time low of Rs176.42, due to a massive trade deficit in the first five months of the current fiscal year.

On Wednesday, the interbank foreign currency market ended at 175.48. Previously, on November 29, 2021, the rupee hit a record low of Rs176.20 versus the US dollar.

According to reports, the nation has its largest-ever monthly trade imbalance of $5.1 billion in November 2021.

Exports and imports totaled $12.4 billion and $33.1 billion, respectively, in the first five months of the current fiscal year.

During the study period, the trade imbalance increased by 117% year on year to $20.8 billion.

According to a Topline Securities survey, the rupee may fall even more next year, with participants expecting the local currency to trade between Rs180 and Rs185 per dollar.

Following the rise in the policy rate and the signature of an agreement between the SBP and the Saudi Development Fund (SDF) for the placement of $3 billion with the central bank, the market expected the rupee to rebound. However, substantial imports countered the State Bank’s efforts on the external front.

Since the start of the current fiscal year, the rupee has been under pressure. It fell Rs18.88, or 11.98%, from a close of Rs157.54 on June 30, 2021 to a close of Rs176.42 on December 2, 2021.

Meanwhile, at the time of filing this report, the open market buying and selling of the dollar was recorded at Rs176.50/Rs178.

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