The rupee on Friday fell by 17 paise to 49.67 against the U.S. dollar in early trade on the Interbank Foreign Exchange market, following increased demand for the American currency from importers

However, a higher opening in the equity market capped the rupee’s losses.

Dealers said apart from dollar gains against the euro, increased demand for the dollar from importers mainly weighed on the rupee sentiment.

The rupee had ended lower by 35 paise at 49.50/51 against the American currency yesterday.

The BSE benchmark Sensex rose by 44.30 points, or 0.25 per cent, to 17,875.05 in early trade today.

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