New week, same old weak Lebanese pound

Exchange dealers said they were buying the greenback for LL19,100 and selling it for LL19,200

  
A man counts U.S. dollar banknotes at a currency exchange shop in Beirut, Lebanon March 2, 2021.

A man counts U.S. dollar banknotes at a currency exchange shop in Beirut, Lebanon March 2, 2021.

REUTERS/Mohamed Azakir

BEIRUT: The Lebanese pound was little changed at the start of the week Monday, trading at LL19,150 against the dollar, after a big drop in the previous session, exchange dealers said.

Exchange dealers said they were buying the greenback for LL19,100 and selling it for LL19,200, compared to Saturday's rate of LL19,050-LL19,150.

After riding a wave of confidence early last week, the pound dropped in value over the last few days as stability over the new designation of former Prime Minister Najib Mikati has begun to wane. Mikati was designated to form a new government charged with implementing reforms, restarting negotiations with the International Monetary Fund over a rescue package and supervising next year's parliamentary elections.

The local currency has lost more than 90 percent of its value since late 2019 as the country plunged into its worst financial and economic crisis in modern times, pushing more than half the population below the poverty line.

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