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Rupee Sheds 1% To Hit Record Low Of 74.99 Versus Dollar Amid Virus Fear

Rupee Sheds 1% To Hit Record Low Of 74.99 Versus Dollar Amid Virus Fear

INR vs USD Rate Today: The rupee is down4.06% against the dollar so far this year

The rupee tumbled to a record low of 74.99 against the US dollar in tandem with a continuing meltdown in global financial markets in the backdrop of the fast-spreading coronavirus pandemic. After starting the session at 74.96, down 70 paise compared with the previous close, the rupee depreciated further to as low as 74.99 against the greenback in morning deals. That marked the rupee's lowest level against the US currency ever. Official data early on Thursday showed the total number of coronavirus cases in India climbed to 169.

Here are 10 things to know about the rupee-dollar pair (INR vs USD) today:

  1. Sharp losses in the domestic equity markets - tracking a prolonged selloff in global peers - put pressure on the rupee in comparison to the US dollar, say analysts.

  2. Benchmark indices S&P BSE Sensex and the broader NSE Nifty 50 plunged as much as 7.46 per cent and 7.51 per cent respectively before trading most of those losses. At 11:40, the Sensex was down 1.79 per cent (517.51 points) at 28,352.00, and the Nifty at 8,260.10, down 2.46 per cent from the previous close.

  3. Benchmark 10-year government bond yield climbed to as high as 6.45 per cent in morning and was last seen at 6.42 per cent, as against the previous close of 6.30 per cent. 

  4. Crude oil prices bounced back nearly 20 per cent after days of heavy losses, but the gains were short-lived. Brent crude futures - the global benchmark for crude oil -  were last seen trading up $2.10 - or 8 per cent - at $26.98 per barrel.

  5. Financial markets the world over are bearing the brunt of the coronavirus outbreak as it threatens world business, refuelling fears of recession in major economies. Investors fear the current selloff in the capital markets is yet to bottom out as aggressive steps by policymakers around the globe fail to lift market sentiment, say analysts.

  6. On Wednesday, the European Central Bank committed $820 billion in bonds through 2020, following emergency interest rate cuts and fiscal support packages around the globe. But so far none of it has been able to put a floor under dire sentiment, and some $15 trillion in shareholder value has been wiped out in little more than a month of heavy selling.

  7. "The panic in Asian currencies spilled over to the rupee dragged by weaker yuan coupled with broad dollar strength. The reaction function of the central bank would be interesting to watch," said Abhishek Goenka, founder and CEO of forex advisory firm IFA Global. "Lack of Intervention and continuous scout for dollars will further weaken the rupee to fresh lows," Mr Goenka added.

  8. The dollar index - which gauges the greenback's strength six peers overseas - was last up 0.22 per cent.

  9. Foreign investors remained bearish in Indian capital markets, pulling out a net Rs 5,085.35 crore on Wednesday, data from stock exchange NSE showed.

  10. As of Wednesday's close of 71.36, the rupee is down 4.06 per cent against the greenback so far this year.