The rupee on Monday fell by 34 paise to close at more than three-month low of 71.98 (provisional) against the US dollar, tracking heavy selling in domestic equities and strengthening of the American currency in the overseas market. Forex traders said investor sentiment remained fragile amid concerns over the impact of coronavirus outbreak on global economy.
The death toll due to coronavirus climbed to 2,592 with 150 new fatalities while the total number of confirmed cases increased to over 77,000, Chinese health officials said on Monday. However, easing crude oil prices supported the local unit and restricted the fall to some extent. At the interbank foreign exchange market, the local currency opened on a negative note at 71.94.
During the day, the domestic currency touched a high of 71.76 and a low of 72.01 and finally settled 34 paise lower at 71.98 against the US currency. This is the lowest closing level since November 13 when the rupee had settled at 72.09. Financial markets remained closed on Friday on account of 'Mahashivratri'.
Indian stock markets closed with deep losses following a massive sell-offs in global equities as spike in new coronavirus cases beyond China spooked investors. Equity benchmark Sensex plunging about 807 points or 1.96 per cent and the broader Nifty tanking more than 2 per cent
"In line with other Asian currencies, the rupee declined amid concern over coronavirus outbreak, which is threatening to damage the global economy," said said V K Sharma, Head PCG and Capital Markets Strategy, HDFC Securities.
"Indian rupee is likely to stay under pressure in the next few days amid month-end dollar demand and risk off sentiments. Spot USDINR is having multiple top resistance at 72.15 and support at 71.32," he added.
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