The Indian rupee gained further strength, ending at a fresh 2-1/2 year high against the US dollar on Thursday. The rupee advanced as much as 13 paise to finish at a fresh 2-1/2 year high of 63.41 a piece US dollar at the interbank foreign exchange market on Thursday. The rupee opened down by 5 paise at 63.58, but very quickly pared the morning losses and added as much as 16 paise to hit a day’s high of 63.37 vs the US dollar. During the day, the domestic currency rupee shuttled between the levels of 63.3700 and 63.6125 against the US dollar. The rupee had been on a rising streak from mid-November 2017 since then rupee got strengthened and appreciated by about 200 paise from a level of 65.42 against the US dollar.
The Reserve Bank of India fixed the reference rate of the rupee at 63.3914 against the US dollar on Thursday. Earlier yesterday, the rupee snapped its 4-day rising streak which led the domestic currency at 2-1/2 year high. The rupee lost 5 paise to conclude at 63.53 against the US dollar on Wednesday. With today’s appreciation in the rupee, the Indian currency had strengthened by about 74 paise in last 6-day period against the US dollar.
Meanwhile, India’s stock market ended higher on Thursday in a volatile trade after rising continuously in the afternoon session. The late upsurge in the blue-chip shares such as Tata Steel, L&T, ONGC, Dr Reddy’s, Asian Paints, Sun Pharma, Coal India, Bajaj Finance, Hindustan Petroleum Corporation, Vedanta, and State Bank of India led the benchmark indices higher. Shares of almost all PSU banks rallied up to 10% in the afternoon trade on Thursday as Narendra Modi government sought another Rs 80,000 crore bonds for the recapitalisation of NPA-laden state-run lenders. BSE Sensex gained 176.26 or 0.52% to finish at 33,969.64 whereas NSE Nifty added 61.6 points or 0.59% to conclude at 10,504.8, index settled above the psychological mark of 10,500 for the first time in 2018. During the day, the benchmark Sensex jumped 202.02 points to the day’s high of 33,995.4 and the broader Nifty added 69.8 points to mark the day’s high of 10,513.
The other broad market indices of NSE such as Nifty Next 50, Nifty 100, Nifty 200, Nifty 500, Nifty Midcap 50, Nifty Mid100 Free and Nifty Sml100 Free advanced in a range of 0.6% to 1.2%. On the other hand, eight out of eleven sectoral indices of NSE settled in green with Nifty Metal, Nifty Pharma and Nifty PSU Bank leading the charge while Nifty Auto and Nifty IT closed with marginal losses. The Nifty PSU Bank index surged as much as 3% to the day’s high of 3,732.4 after opening little higher at 3,643.6 on Thursday after Narendra Modi government sought parliamentary nod for additional Rs 80,000 crore bonds for the recapitalisation of PSBs (public sector banks) which are sitting on a pile of Rs 9.8 lakh crore bad loans.