State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) is close to completing its investigations of eight banks that were allegedly involved in the manipulation of US Dollars within their foreign exchange operations in last two months.
According to Reuters, the SBP spokesman Abid Qamar said the investigations are being carried out and results might come soon. He did not give an exact date for the completion but said the probe had started some time back during the tenure of the previous finance minister.
Last month, the dollar reached an all-time high level against Rupee at Rs. 240. The banking regulator issued show-cause notices to eight banks for quoting high dollar prices in the local market. These banks include the National Bank of Pakistan, Allied Bank Limited, Bank Al Habib, Standard Chartered Bank, Meezan Bank, Habib Bank Limited, HabibMetro Bank, and United Bank Limited.
A few days later, a parliamentary committee directed the SBP to take appropriate action against all banks and exchange companies involved in volatility in the exchange rate in recent weeks.
The central bank did not only initiate the inquiry but also tightened rules of foreign exchange operations to contain the free fall of the Rupee against the dollar.
The dollar recovered to reach nearly Rs. 223 following the local currency regained its confidence in recent days.
The rupee gains coincided with the return of Ishaq Dar as finance minister for his fourth stint. Pakistan’s top finance czar has strongly favored intervention in currency markets and has come down hard on exchange speculation in the past, the report further said.