The rupee started the New Year on a positive note. Gaining by 15 paise against the greenback, the rupee touched 69.62 in early trade on Tuesday. Besides weakness in the greenback against some currencies overseas, said forex traders, increased selling of the US currency by exporters and banks supported the rupee. At the interbank forex market, the rupee opened higher at 69.63 and rose further to quote at 69.62, showing a rise of 15 paise over its previous close.
The rupee had on Monday signed off the last trading session of 2018 with a gain of 18 paise at 69.77 per dollar.
Meanwhile, the dollar index, which gauges the American currencies strength against a basket of six currencies was trading lower by 0.02 per cent at 96.15.
Traders said foreign fund outflows and higher crude oil prices weighed on the local unit and capped the upmove.
Foreign funds pulled out Rs 326.87 crore from the capital markets on a net basis, while domestic institutional investors bought shares worth Rs 321.98 crore Monday, provisional data showed.
Globally, Brent crude, the international benchmark, was trading 1.11 per cent higher at $53.80 per barrel.
Meanwhile, the BSE benchmark Sensex turned choppy after opening higher in early trade Tuesday amid sustained capital outflows by foreign funds and surging global crude oil prices.
The 30-share index dropped over 85.77 points, or 0.24 per cent, to 35,982.56 in morning trade, after touching a high of 36,161.80 at the outset.