Egypt Central Bank Devalues Currency by 13% at Dollar Sale


The Egyptian central bank devalued the pound by almost 13 percent at an “exceptional” sale of dollars on Monday.

The central bank said it sold $198.1 million to local lenders at 8.85 pounds per dollar.

That compares with a previous exchange rate of 7.73 pounds.

It wasn’t immediately clear whether the lower price is just limited to Monday’s dollar sale.

Central bank officials weren’t immediately available for comment.

Egypt is grappling with a dollar squeeze that is threatening economic growth in the most populous Arab country.

Foreign-currency reserves have tumbled by more than 50 percent since 2011, though they have stabilized at just over $16 billion in the past six months.

“Is this move enough to solve Egypt’s foreign currency problem?

It will be only if accompanied by a shift in exchange rate regime, making it more flexible,” said Hany Genena, head of equity strategy at Cairo-based investment bank Beltone Financial.

“A flexible regime will unlock inflows at a whole different level. Debt inflows, either from private investors or from funding agencies such as the IMF as well as equity inflows.”



Source: Bloomberg