Iranian Rial records new low against U.S. dollar

Iranian Rial hits a new recorded low against the U.S. dollar on Saturday, despite central bank attempts to reduce demand for foreign currency from savers with concern over the country’s inflation and economic state, Al-Arabiya reported on Saturday.

The Rial is trading at 575,000 on the black market against the dollar, previously being 540,000 on Friday, according to foreign exchange site

Iranians have been protecting the value of their savings amidst annual inflation reaching 50 percent, through buying foreign currency or gold.

The Iranian central bank lifted a ban on private exchange shops selling hard currencies, in an attempt to ease demand for dollars.

It opened an exchange center last week to allow ordinary Iranians to purchase foreign currency. The move is yet to control demand for dollars, said market analysts.

The Rial’s downfall stems from the unrest and Iran’s increased isolation in the face of Western sanctions over its human rights record and Russia’s use of Iranian drones in Ukraine, said Foreign exchange traders.

The U.S. sanctions in 2018 by former President Donald Trump have impacted Iran’s economy by limiting Tehran’s oil exports and access to foreign currency.

The Rial has lost 45 percent of its value since protest outburst following the death in police custody of a young Kurdish Iranian woman began in September, which is the biggest challenges to Iranian rule since the 1979 Islamic Revolution.

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