The rupee lost 34 paise to close at 53.85 against the dollar as demand from oil importers outstripped the supply of American currency on a weak trading day.
A weak euro against the dollar also put downward pressure on the Indian unit. The common currency was trading at 1.34 against the dollar at 5.45 p.m. Indian Standard time.
“It could be an interesting day tomorrow and a further weak euro might pull the rupee below the 54-level,” a dealer with a public sector bank said.
The local unit, which had closed at 53.51, opened weaker at 53.63. Volumes were thin in currency markets as most Asian markets were closed on account of the lunar New Year’s Day. Today’s fall is the fourth straight session of decline for the Indian unit. Dollar inflows from pending share sale in state-run MMTC and SAIL might boost the Indian unit in the days ahead.
Call up a tad; bonds drop
The interbank call rates, which closed at 7.80 per cent on Friday, closed a tad higher at 7.85 per cent.
The 8.15 per cent government security, which matures in 2022, closed lower at Rs 101.89 (yield: 7.86 per cent) against Friday’s close of Rs 101.98 (yield: 7.84 per cent).