The rupee appreciated by 29 paise on Friday, May 21, to settle at 72.83 (provisional), amid positive domestic equities and a weaker American currency in the global market. At the interbank foreign exchange market, the domestic unit opened at 72.98 against the dollar and registered an intra-day high of 72.83. It witnessed a low of 73.09. In an early trade session, the local unit gained 15 paise to 72.97 against the greenback. The domestic currency closed at 72.83, registering a rise of 29 paise over its previous closing.
On Thursday, May 20, the local unit settled at 73.12 against the greenback. The domestic currency edged lower by 13 paise to settle at 73.18 against the dollar on Wednesday, May 19. The rupee closed at a seven-week high peak on Tuesday, May 18, at 73.05 against the greenback. Meanwhile today, the dollar index, which gauges the greenback's strength against a basket of six currencies, slipped 0.10 per cent to 89.71.
"Overall the sentiments are quite risk-on amid economic revival and reopening of the Western countries. Also, in India the improving trend of moderation in daily new Covid cases is boosting risk sentiments,'' said Mr. Rahul Gupta, Head Of Research- Currency, Emkay Global Financial Services.
''While, dollar index has continued the downtrend, despite Fed minutes spooked the market on the prospect of Fed tapering and there are less signs of DXY bouncing atleast in the short term. So fx traders will monitor the Covid situation and trend in dollar, and keep the spot within 72.50-73.50 with a negative bias,'' added Mr Gupta.
''USDINR was bot in the last two days as $ index rose a bit and RBI was protecting 72.95 level. However as the $ index fell rupee rose to 73.00 level and is set to open there. Inflows have ensured that rupee does not weaken beyond a certain level...Exporters may also sell for the medium term so that they are hedged and when rupee weaken they can hedge near term,'' said Mr. Anil Kumar Bhansali, Head of Treasury - Finrex Treasury Advisors.
''The USD/INR pair started the day at 73.24, nearly unchanged from the previous day's close. FPI equity outflows totaled more than USD 2.7 billion in April and May (till date), and the currency pair's downtrend was halted at 72.9 levels on Wednesday as dollar buying interest emerged at a lower level, and the market was reluctant to take the pair any lower on fears of RBI intervention,'' said Kshitij Purohit, Lead International Products & Commodities at CapitalVia Global Research Limited.
''A large rally in global stocks and a comparatively weak Dollar against the major currencies have affected the local currency's positive sentiment. After accounting for the virus's spread in Taiwan, Singapore, and Japan, the Asian currencies' power against the dollar, including the rupee, is in doubt,'' added Mr Purohit.
On the domestic equity market front, the BSE Sensex ended 975.62 points or 1.97 per cent higher at 50,540.48, while the broader NSE Nifty climbed 269.25 points or 1.81 per cent to 15,175.30.
“Nifty gained 3.4 per cent this past week as markets noted the improvement in the Covid-19 situation in India. Globally, India was the fastest country to administer 17 crore vaccine doses in just 114 days. Amongst sectors the Nifty Bank, Nifty PSU Bank and Nifty Realty gave 7%-8% return during the week supported by strong quarterly results and expectations that the government is working on a new stimulus package,'' said Shrikant Chouhan, Executive Vice President, Equity Technical Research at Kotak Securities.
''Since the Nifty-50 has decisively broken the 15,000 mark on both daily and weekly closing it can potentially inch up to 15,500 quite fast. The falling Covid cases and good earnings season could be the main reason for further up move. We need to see whether FPI flows turn net positive for this up move to play out,'' he added.
According to exchange data, the foreign institutional investors were net buyers in the capital market on May 20 as they purchased shares worth Rs 71.04 crore. Brent crude futures, the global oil benchmark, rose 0.95 per cent to $ 65.73 per barrel.