Pakistani rupee maintained a losing streak against the US dollar for the third straight day, shedding 27 paisas (-0.15 percent) on Thursday. The State Bank of Pakistan said in a statement that the dollar opened at Rs176.22 in the interbank market and closed at Rs176.49. The rupee witnessed a trading range of 44 paisas during the session, showing the intraday high bid of 176.50 and low offer of 176.06. Within the open market, the rupee was traded at 177.50/178.50 per dollar. The experts said that surging oil prices are weighing on the local currency as they will inflate the oil import bill. The country’s oil bill increased sharply by 113.39 percent to $10.18 billion during the July-December period of the current year 2021-22 as compared to $4.77 billion in the corresponding period of the last fiscal year 2020-21. They said that the rupee is also under pressure due to rising commodity prices. They said that the local unit has witnessed a period of stabilisation since December; however, rising fuel and food prices globally are hitting it hard. The experts were of the view that trade and current account deficits due to rising import bill and depletion in the foreign exchange reserves are major threats to the rupee’s stability. The trade deficit ballooned by 106 percent to $25.48 billion in the first half of the current fiscal year 2021-22 due to a massive surge in imports, which touched $40.50 billion. Likewise, foreign exchange reserves also fell to $23.90 billion from $24.02 billion last week. Overall Pakistan rupee shed 42 paisas against the US dollar during the four sessions of this week, while it has appreciated by 2 paisas during the current year 2022. The local unit has depreciated by Rs19.06 during the ongoing fiscal year 2021-22. However, the experts said that the rupee may recover against the dollar after the revival of the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) Extended Fund Facility (EFF). They said that the condition of approval of the Finance (Supplementary) Act 2021 – one of the key conditions of the IMF – has been met and the passage of the State Bank of Pakistan (Amendment) Bill 2021 from the parliament will pave the way for the revival of the IMF programme. The IMF board is scheduled to meet on January 28 to take up Pakistan’s case.