Less foreign outflow in H1 than 2018
Despite the economic disruption caused by the Easter Sunday attacks, Sri Lanka’s equity and bond markets have seen less foreign outflow in the first half of 2019 compared with the outflows for 2018.
According to the data from Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) and the Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL), net foreign outflows from 1 January to 30 June 2019 were Rs. 24.8 billion, while Rs. 30.6 billion net foreign outflows were reported at the end of the corresponding period last year.
In the first half of 2019, CSE recorded foreign inflows of Rs. 23.58 billion and Rs. 29.94 billion of foreign outflows, recording a net foreign outflow of 6.37 billion. In the same period last year, CSE recorded Rs. 49 billion foreign inflows while outflows were reported as Rs. 50.65 billion, recording a net foreign outflow of Rs. 1.6 billion.
Meanwhile, treasury bills and bonds held by foreigners during the first half of 2019 came down to Rs. 146 billion from Rs. 164.5 billion, resulting in a net foreign outflow of Rs. 18.4 billion.
Treasury bills and bonds held by foreigners during the corresponding period last year came down to Rs. 295.4 billion from Rs. 324.3 billion, recording a net foreign outflow of Rs. 28.9 billion.
The year 2018 saw investors moving their investments to safe haven destinations such as the US, along with the strengthening of the US economy and several rate hikes by the US Federal Reserve.