Rupee breaches the 60-a-dollar mark, settles at 59.91 a dollar

29 March 2014

The rupee continued to gain against the US dollar for a second week breaching the 60 a dollar level and hitting 59.91 against the US currency on Saturday, amidst a steady inflow of foreign funds into the country's equity and debt markets.

The rupee has gained about 98 paise against the dollar during the week, the first major gain after eight months, even as rising inflow of foreign funds boosted the equity market.

The BSE Sensex opened higher at 21,827.50 and rose further to an all-time high of 22,363.97 before closing at 22,339.97, showing a gain of 584.65 points, or 2.69 per cent, over the week.

The rupee's upward momentum was also aided by continued dollar selling by exporters.

The domestic unit commenced trading on the interbank foreign exchange market slightly lower at 60.92 a dollar from last weekend's close of 60.89 and immediately touched a low of 60.93.

Later, it rebounded to a high of 59.68 before settling the week at 59.91, showing a rise of 98 paise or 1.61 per cent. The rupee had gained 30 paise or 0.49 per cent against the dollar last week.

The trading range for the spot dollar / rupee trade is expected to be within 59.20 to 61.00.

The rupee premium for the forward dollar ended mixed on alternate bouts of buying and selling.

The benchmark six-month forward dollar premium payable in August finished lower at 211-213 paise from last weekend's close of 220-222 paise, while far-forward contracts maturing in February 2015 edged up to 465-467 paise from 464-466 paise.

The RBI fixed the reference rate for the US dollar at 60.0998 from 61.0465 and the euro at 82.5765 from 84.1755, respectively.

The rupee remained firm against the pound sterling at 99.56, against last weekend's close of 100.53 and also shot up further to 82.27 per euro from 84.03.

It, too strengthened further to 58.54 per 100 Japanese yen from preceding weekend's close of 59.53.

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