The Indian rupee extended losses for the second straight session on Thursday falling as much as 14 paise to a fresh 5-month low against the US dollar as Brent crude broke $72 per barrel mark in the early dealings today. The rupee opened flat at 65.29 per US dollar on Thursday after slipping to a five-month low on Wednesday. Within minutes, the domestic currency dropped about 14 paise to 65.45 apiece US dollar at the interbank foreign exchange market in the morning trades on Thursday. Earlier yesterday, the rupee slid about 32 paise or 0.49% to a five-month low 65.31 vs US dollar. The Reserve Bank of India has fixed a reference rate of 65.1272 against US dollar on Wednesday.
Up until 10:40 am, the rupee hovered between the range of between of 64.29 and 65.45. The US dollar edged up against the yen on Thursday, but its gains were tepid as concerns over possible Western military action against Syria lent support to the safe-haven Japanese currency, Reuters said in a report. The geopolitical tensions shifted some focus away from the US-China trade standoff, with the dollar inching up 0.1% to 106.91 Japanese yen after losing 0.4% on Wednesday, Reuters added.
Meanwhile, the oil markets remained tense on Thursday on concerns over a military escalation in Syria, although prices remained some way off Wednesday’s highest since late 2014 as bulging American supplies weighed, Reuters reported. The ongoing trade disputes between the two biggest economies in the world United States and China also kept the investors’ sentiments on a negative pitching. Brent crude surged 0.6% to $72.49 per barrel while US West Texas Intermediate rose 0.76% to $67.33 per barrel on Thursday.
Indian equity markets were trading little changed on Thursday as market participants turned cautious ahead of macroeconomic data release and the advent corporate earnings beginning with nation’s second-largest IT company Infosys scheduled on 13 April 2018.