Rupee hits 8-week low of 66.44, drops 68 paise

Rupee hits 8-week low of 66.44, drops 68 paise

The rupee on Monday tumbled by 68 paise to close at a nearly 8-week low of 66.44 against the American currency on persistent dollar demand from banks and importers amidst sharp fall in equities.

The rupee resumed lower at 66.41 as against the last weekend’s level of 65.76 at the Interbank Foreign Exchange market and dropped further to 66.50 before finishing at 66.44 per dollar, showing a loss of 68 paise or 1.03 per cent.

The domestic currency had last ended at 66.46 on September 16. The rupee has lost 95 paise or 1.44 per cent in three trading days. It hovered in the range of 66.50 to 66.31 during the day.

The dollar index was trading lower by 0.26 per cent against a basket of six currencies in the late afternoon trade. At overseas market, Oil prices rebounded in Asia but stayed below $45 a barrel as gains were limited by a strong dollar and data showing a decline in Chinese crude imports.

The dollar eased against the euro but gained against the yen today, after stronger-than-expected US jobs data last week pushed the greenback sharply higher.

The dollar gained as that jobs data increased hopes for a US interest-rate hike in December. As well, foreign-exchange market participants are looking beyond the possible end-of-year increase, and are starting to factor in additional rate increases next year, Tokyo dealers said. Meanwhile, the Sensex ended lower by 143.84 points or 0.55 per cent to close at 26,121.40.

In forward market, premium for dollar dropped further on persistent receivings from exporters. The benchmark six-month premium payable in April eased further to 199-201 paise from the last weekend’s level of 203-205 paise and far forward October 2016 contract also moved down further to 406-408 paise from 410-412 paise.

The RBI fixed the reference rate for the dollar at 66.3378 and for the Euro at 71.4458. The rupee fell against the pound sterling to finish at 100.28 from 99.51 previously and dropped further against the euro to 71.66 from 71.51. However, the domestic currency also moved up against the Japanese currency to 53.84 per 100 yen from 53.94.