The Indian rupee declined by 24 paise to Rs. 53.10 per U.S. dollar in early trade today on sustained demand for the American currency from importers and some banks amid weakness in local equities and dollar firmness in overseas markets.

The rupee resumed lower at Rs. 53.00/01 per dollar on the Interbank Foreign Exchange, as against its previous close of Rs. 52.86/87 per dollar, and moved down further to Rs. 53.10 per dollar before quoting at Rs. 53.02/03 per dollar at 10. 30 a.m.

The domestic currency moved in a range between Rs. 52.75 and Rs. 53.10 per dollar during morning deals.

Sustained dollar demand from importers and banks amid weakness in the equity market and the firming dollar overseas mainly affected the rupee value against the dollar, a forex dealer said.

In New York, the dollar was quoting broadly flat in Asian trading hours yesterday, retaining recent gains as investors exercised caution in light of Europe’s debt problems.

Meanwhile, the BSE Sensex fell by 54.73 points, or 0.36 per cent, to 15,324.61 in opening trade.

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