The rupee on Thursday moved in a range of 35 paise against dollar. The local currency rose by up to 26 paise to hit 68.32 against the US currency and slipped by up to 9 paise to an intraday low of 68.67. By afternoon, the domestic currency was trading higher at 68.42, up by 16 paise compared with its previous close of 68.58, registered on Wednesday. Rupee strengthened in tandem with other emerging market currencies after Federal Reserve chief Jerome Powell bolstered expectations of a rate cut later this month, forex traders were cited as saying in news agency Press Trust of India (PTI) report.
Mr Powell told a congressional committee on Wednesday that flagging global growth and trade tensions continue to weigh on the US economic outlook and the central bank is ready to "act as appropriate" to boost growth. Investors are wagering on a rate cut by the Fed as early as this month.
According to Rushabh Maru, research analyst at Anand Rathi Shares and Stock Brokers, pressure on crude oil prices also supported the rupee. "The focus will now shift to India's CPI (Consumer Price Index) and IIP data," he said.
Meanwhile, foreign institutional investors (FIIs) pulled out a net Rs 604.94 crore on Wednesday, provisional data with the exchanges showed.
Domestic equity benchmark BSE Sensex jumped over 300 points on Thursday tracking strong cues from global markets following Jerome Powell's remarks. Similarly, the broader Nifty rose up to 90 points to 11,590.60.
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