Saudi Arabian Riyal

SAR

  • Convertible: Yes
  • Transferable: Yes
  • Exchange rate regime: Pegged to USD, with a target level of 3.75 SAR per USD
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Monetary Policy

The monetary policy and exchange rate for the Saudi Arabian riyal are managed by SAMA – the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority. The exchange rate and monetary policy closely follow those of USD. Until 2003, SAR was pegged to special drawing rights (SDRs – the currency basket used by the IMF). The peg was subsequently changed to USD, and this remains the case.

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Features and Highlights

The liquidity in SAR spots and forwards is reasonably good.In general, forward prices in the currency also reflect the USD peg. EUR/SAR forwards therefore show similar movements to EUR/USD forwards. However, this can deviate at times when markets anticipate a possible change in exchange rate regime. Whenever such fears arise, liquidity also becomes scarce.

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Expert Opinion

As USD/SAR is pegged at 3.75, the evolution of EUR/SAR is completely correlated with that of EUR/USD. Sometimes, due to unusual events, we see that USD/SAR fluctuates slightly away from the target rate, but those movements are very short-lived and are generally not significant. Therefore, the FX risk for European companies trading in SAR can be considered similar to the risk when trading in USD.Saudi Arabia and other Gulf countries (the seven members of the Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf, otherwise colloquially known as the Gulf Cooperation Council or GCC) have long been considering the introduction of a common currency, but this has never come to fruition.

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Regulations

In general, there are no special restrictions on the purchase and sale of SAR.

Keep In Mind

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