Rupee ends lower by 25 paise Vs dollar

Mumbai: The rupee fell for third straight session today slipping further by 25 paise to 49.40/41 against the US currency on sustained dollar demand from banks and importers on the back of strong dollar in overseas markets.

The rupee stayed weak for the third day as banks and importers preferred to increase their dollar position in view of firm dollar in overseas markets, a dealer said. Also, investors pulled out funds from the domestic equity market, which dropped by nearly 2 per cent in recent sessions.

The rupee resumed lower at 49.40/41 per dollar at the Interbank Foreign Exchange (Forex) market as against the last closing level of 49.15/16 per dollar and dropped further to 49.50 per dollar before finishing at 49.40/41. It hovered in a range of 49.20 per dollar and 49.50 per dollar during the day.

The US dollar climbed to fresh session highs in New York market yesterday to trade at its strongest level since mid-January as concerns intensified over whether Greece will receive the next tranche of aid from international lenders. The BSE benchmark Sensex dropped by 287 points or 1.77 per cent today. Meanwhile, the Reserve Bank of India fixed the reference rate for the US dollar at Rs 49.2250 and for the Euro at Rs 65.0640.

The rupee premium for the forward dollar remained weak on sustained receiving by exporters. The benchmark six-month forward dollar premium payable in March settled down at 68-71 paise from the yesterday`s closing level of 83-86 paise and far-forward contracts maturing in September also concluded lower at 94-97 paise from 117-120 paise previously.

The rupee firmed up against the pound sterling to end at Rs 76.04/06 from yesterday`s close of Rs 76.26/28 and also moved up to 65.16/18 per euro from Rs 65.59/61 per euro previously. It, however, declined further against the Japanese yen to Rs 64.41/43 per 100 yen from last close of Rs 63.97/99.