CAIRO – 5 July 2017: Exchange offices in Saudi Arabia have stopped dealing with the Qatari riyal, considering their stock of the currency as “useless”, Adel El-Maltany, chief of the exchange traders division in Mecca, announced Wednesday.
The stock is valued at QAR 150,000 ($41,199.75), spread over all 66 accredited exchange offices, Maltany told Saudi newspaper Al Riyadh.
The Qatari riyal is already facing a devaluation threat on what seems like an economic blockade on Qatar from British banks and international financial institutions.
In this week’s transactions, the riyal dropped significantly to QAR 3.81 per $1, down from a normal level of QAR 3.64.
UK’s Lloyds Banking Group, Barclays, Royal Bank of Scotland, Thomas Exchange Global, and Travelex all reported to have halted their dealings with the Qatari riyal over two days, imposing more pressure on the currency.
Rating agencies were pessimistic about the impact of the Qatar crisis. Moody’s Investors Services changed Wednesday the outlook on Qatar's rating to negative from stable and
affirmed the long-term issuer and senior unsecured debt ratings at Aa3, which indicates a low credit risk.
Standard and Poor’s lowered on June 7 Qatar's long-term rating from 'AA' to 'AA-' on negative implications of the decision.
Also, in the second week of the diplomatic rift, Fitch said a downgrade in Qatar’s credit rating is possible over concerns of the crisis deepening.