The rupee fell by 8 paise to close at 74.27 (provisional) against the US dollar on Thursday, November 19, on muted domestic equities and a strong American currency. At the interbank foreign exchange market, the domestic unit opened at 74.28 against the US dollar and touched an intra-day high of 74.22. It registered a low of 74.33. In the opening trade today, the rupee fell by 13 paise to 74.32 against the dollar. It opened at 74.28 and gained ground touching 74.23 against the dollar. The rupee settled at 74.27 against the greenback, registering a fall of 8 paise over its previous close. On Wednesday, November 18, the rupee had settled at 74.19 against the US dollar.
According to Forex traders, the rupee is trading in a narrow range as rising coronavirus cases in the US and Europe offset positive sentiments surrounding the progress on the vaccine front. The American pharmaceutical giant Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech claimed that they have concluded the third phase study of their COVID-19 vaccine, meeting all primary efficacy endpoints.
Meanwhile, the dollar index, which gauges the greenback's strength against a basket of six currencies, rose by 0.33 per cent to 92.62. On the domestic equity market front, the BSE benchmark Sensex closed 580.09 points lower at 43,599.96, while the broader NSE Nifty dropped by 166.55 points to 12,771.70.
''World stocks fell for the third day in a row on Thursday tracking overnight weakness in Asia and Wall Street as widening COVID-19 limitations weighed on market sentiments. Nifty has formed a triple top in the near term over the past three days in the 12934-12963 band. For the upmove to continue it would be necessary to breach this band. There is slight damage to the bullish sentiment in the markets. In case we do not get another negative trigger soon, we could recover from this setback,'' said Deepak Jasani, Head of Retail Research, HDFC Securities.
According to provisional exchange data, the foreign institutional investors were net buyers in the capital market as they purchased shares worth Rs 3,071.93 crore on a net basis on November 18. Brent crude futures, the global oil benchmark, fell 0.70 per cent to USD 44.03 per barrel.