MUMBAI: The rupee tumbled 41 paise to 69.20 against the US dollar in early trade on Thursday amid unabated foreign fund outflows and rising crude oil prices. Forex traders strengthening of the greenback vis-a-vis other currencies overseas and cautious opening in domestic equities weighed on the local unit.
Forex traders said though the US Federal Reserve cut the benchmark lending rate on Wednesday for the first time in more than a decade, market participants reacted to Fed Chair Jerome Powell statement which indicated dampened hopes of further rate cut.
The rupee opened weak at 69.17 at the interbank forex market and slipped further to 69.20, showing a decline of 41 paise against its previous close. The domestic unit had settled at 68.79 against the US dollar on Wednesday.
Foreign institutional investors (FIIs) remained net sellers in the capital markets, pulling out Rs 1,497.07 crore on Wednesday, provisional data with the exchanges showed.The 30-share index was trading 205.69 points or 0.55 per cent lower at 37,275.43; and the broader Nifty fell 16.15 points or 0.44 per cent to 11,069.25.
The dollar index, which gauges the greenback's strength against a basket of six currencies, inched up 0.35 per cent to 98.85.
Meanwhile, the government's fiscal deficit touched Rs 4.32 lakh crore for the June quarter, which is 61.4 per cent of the budget estimate for 2019-20 fiscal. Brent crude futures, the global oil benchmark, climbed 0.70 per cent to USD 65.17 per barrel. The 10-year government bond yield was at 6.40 per cent in morning trade.