Mumbai: The Indian rupee eased to its lowest in nearly six weeks on 2 May due to heavy dollar demand from oil companies and gold traders to meet import commitments.
At 10:15 a.m, the rupee was trading at 40.67/68 per dollar, just off an intraday low of 40.71, which was the weakest since 17 March, according to Reuters data. It ended at 40.50/52 on Wednesday.
“Oil firms, which step up dollar purchases towards the end of each month to meet import bills, continued buying the U.S. currency,” dealers said.
Oil, India’s biggest import, traded near $112 per barrel, after touching a record $119.93 this week.
“It seems oil companies were not able to meet their dollar requirement by the end of April. So we saw this demand spilling into the new month,” the chief dealer at a private bank said.
“Gold traders were also buying dollars,” he added. Gold hovered near a four-month low, weighed down by the dollar’s recovery against the euro and lower oil prices.