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Rupee slumps 18 paise against US dollar to 74.36

The rupee depreciated 20 paise to provisionally close at 75.79 against the US dollar on Thursday as strengthening US dollar and weak domestic equities weighed on investor sentiment.

Forex traders said risk appetite remained weak as the US Federal Reserve projected weak growth for 2020. Moreover, foreign fund outflows also dented market mood.

The rupee opened weak at 75.81 at the interbank forex market and recovered some lost ground to close at 75.79 against US dollar, down 20 paise over its last close.

It had settled at 75.59 against the US dollar on Wednesday.

During the four-hour trading session, the rupee touched an intra-day high of 75.72 and a low of 75.88.

The US Fed has cut its benchmark short-term rate to near zero and said it would keep interest rates low through 2022.

Meanwhile, the 30-share BSE benchmark Sensex was trading 580.39 points lower at 33,666.66 and broader NSE Nifty fell 168.85 points to 9,947.30.

Foreign institutional investors were net sellers in the capital market as they sold shares worth Rs 919.26 crore on Wednesday, according to provisional exchange data.

Brent crude futures, the global oil benchmark, fell 3.12 per cent to USD 40.43 per barrel.

The dollar index, which gauges the greenback’s strength against a basket of six currencies, rose 0.16 per cent to 96.11.

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