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Lebanese pound retreats as Mikati, Macron meet

An exchange dealer office in Hamra, Feb. 1, 2021. (The Daily Star/Mohamad Azakir)

BEIRUT: The Lebanese pound fell slightly Saturday, trading at 16,150 to the dollar.

Exchange dealers said they were buying the greenback for LL16,100 and selling it for LL16,200 on the black market, down from LL15,850 Friday. The pound surged in value after the formation of a Cabinet between President Michel Aoun and Prime Minister Najib Mikati, but has since began to creep back up as Lebanon's Central Bank foreign currency reserves have all but run out.

Speaking to the prime minister in Paris, French President Emmanuel Macron encouraged 'urgent' reforms to help bankrupt Lebanon. The economic crisis has pushed over 70 percent of the population into poverty since 2019, while the pound has lost more than 90 percent of its value.

 

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