The Iranian currency gained around 9% in value against the US dollar earlier this week due to government intervention in the market and a positive view in Tehran of the nuclear talks held on 26-27 February in Kazakhstan. Fars News Agency reported on 4 March that the local currency traded at $1=IR31,500, up from the rate of $1=IR36,300 a day before on the free market. The currency lost more than half its value on the free market last year.

In addition to the free market rate, Iran has a fixed official exchange rate for the rial of $1=IR12,260 and in September 2012 introduced a special rate for the import of some essential goods at the foreign exchange trading center (MEES, 28 September 2012). Also as a result of the government intervention, the exchange rate for the rial at the center improved to $1=24,293 on 6 March from around $1=IR 24,540 a day earlier. (CONTINUED - 791 WORDS)