Rupee ends at over 2-1/2 month low, down 8 paise to 67.44

Mumbai: The rupee today weakened by another 8 paise to close at 2-1/2 month low of 67.44 a dollar, falling for the seventh straight session, on persistent demand for the US currency from banks and importers amid higher crude oil prices and fall in domestic equities. Foreign capital outflows also affected the rupee value against the dollar, a forex dealer said.

Brent crude powered back above USD 49 a barrel in Asia today as oil prices resumed their rise after the dollar eased and militants blew up another pipeline in African producer Nigeria. The rupee resumed lower at 67.43 as against yesterday’s closing level of 67.36 at the Inter-bank Foreign Exchange (forex) market and slid further to 67.50 on initial dollar demand from importers.

However, it recovered afterwards to 67.31 before ending at more than 2-1/2 month low of 67.44 per dollar, showing a loss of 8 paise or 0.12 per cent. The domestic currency has lost 88 paise or 1.32 per cent in seven days.

It hovered in a range of 67.31 per dollar and 67.50 per dollar during the day. The domestic currency had last ended at 67.54 per dollar as on March 2, 2016. The dollar index was up 0.03 per cent in the late global trade against a basket of six global currencies.

Meanwhile, the RBI fixed the reference rate for the dollar at 67.4076 and euro at 75.5437. In cross-currency trades, the rupee recovered against the pound sterling to finish at 98.19 from 98.55 yesterday. However, it dropped against the euro to 75.65 from 75.49. The domestic currency recouped against the yen to 61.09 per 100 yens from 61.33 previously.