Heavy dollar demand from banks and importers on Tuesday pulled down the rupee by 24 paise to end at 54.38, extending losses for the second straight session.
However, a stable stock market and some capital inflows capped the local currency’s fall to some extent, forex dealers said.
The rupee resumed lower at 54.24 against the dollar from its last closing level of 54.14 per dollar at the Interbank Foreign Exchange (Forex) market. It hovered in a range of 54.24 per dollar and 54.42 during the day, before settling at 54.38, a net loss of 24 paise, or 0.44 per cent.
Foreign institutional investors pumped in Rs 226.21 crore into local equities today, as per BSE provisional data.
“Rupee continued with its weak trend for the second straight session. Euro falling below 1.30 and dollar index moving above 83.00 levels contributed to the weakness in the rupee,” said Abhishek Goenka (Founder & CEO, India Forex Advisors).
In the global market, the euro fell below the key USD 1.30 level against the dollar today a level it hasn’t seen since early April, after reports said that private-sector activity across the 17-nation euro zone continued to shrink at a similar pace from the prior month.
In addition, Germany also slipped into contraction, according to the preliminary Markit composite Purchasing Managers’ Index. The euro last traded at USD 1.2979, a drop of 0.6 per cent.
The dollar index, which charts the greenback against a basket of six currencies, rose 0.4 per cent to 82.985.
Meanwhile, the Indian benchmark senses ended marginally higher by 10 points or 0.05 pct to close at 19,179.36.
Forex and money markets will remain closed on Wednesday, April 24, on account of ‘Mahavir Jayanti’. Meanwhile, the premium for the forward dollar recovered on fresh paying pressure from banks and corporates.
The benchmark six-month forward dollar premium payable in September settled better at 161-162-1/2 paise from Monday’s close of 160-161-1/2 paise and far-forward contracts maturing in March also moved up to 330-332 paise from 324-325-1/2 paise.
The RBI fixed the reference rate for the US dollar at 54.2995 and for the euro at 70.8017.
The rupee remained weak against the pound sterling to 82.94 from overnight close of 82.43 and also moved down further against the euro to 70.67 from 70.60.
It, however, fell back against the Japanese yen to 55.11 per 100 yen from previous close of 54.31.