Rupee opens higher at 66.40 against US dollar


The Indian rupee on Wednesday strengthened marginally against the US dollar, tracking the gains in its Asian peers.The rupee opened at 66.40. At 9.08am, the home currency was trading at 66.40, up 0.10% from its previous close of 66.46.

Most Asian currencies were trading higher. Malaysian ringgit was up 0.32%, Thai baht 0.26%, Singapore dollar 0.15%, South Korean won 0.15% and Philippines peso rose 0.07%. However, Japanese yen was down 0.17% and Taiwan dollar fell 0.12%.

India’s benchmark Sensex rose 0.43% or 105.95 points to 24,989.54. So far this year, Sensex fell 4.5%.

Meanwhile, India’s 10-year bond yield was trading at 7.456% as compared with its Tuesday’s close of 7.461%.

On Tuesday, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) governor Raghuram Rajan cut the benchmark repurchase rate to 6.5% from 6.75%. That’s the lowest since March 2011.

So far this year, the rupee weakened 0.35%, and foreign institutional investors (FIIs) have bought $1.28 billion from local equity and sold $673.8 million in debt markets.

The Nikkei Service and Composite PMI data, compiled by Markit, will be out at 10.30am for the month of March on Wednesday. The Service and Composite PMIs were at 51.4 and 51.2, respectively, in February.

The dollar index, which measures the US currency’s strength against major currencies, was trading at 94.677, up 0.04% from its previous close of 94.631.

Data released overnight showed the US trade deficit widened more than expected in February, while another report showed US services sector activity rose in March. The industrial orders in Germany, Europe’s largest economy, unexpectedly fell 1.2% in February, Reutersreported.

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