Mumbai: The Indian rupee today weakened to new all-time lows against the US dollar, tracking losses from Asian currency market. Rupee closed at 70.74 a dollar, down 0.20% from its previous close of 70.59. The currency today opened at 70.69 a dollar and touched a fresh all-time low of 70.86 a dollar and a high of 70.59. According to traders, dollar sale, on behalf of the central bank, pulled the rupee back from the day’s low before it weakened again.

The 10-year bond yield stood at 7.931%, from its Wednesday’s close of 7.918%. Bond yields and prices move in opposite directions. Bank of America in a note on Wednesday said India’s sovereign bonds may be under pressure as oil hold gains near the highest level in a month.

The Sensex lost 0.08% or 32.83 points to close at 38690.10. Since January, it has gained 13.60%.

Bank of America Merrill Lynch in the note, which was released yesterday, says that it is confident that the government will use its surplus balances with the RBI to fund fiscal slippage.

Surplus cash balance rose to 1.7 trillion as of March, 2018 from 1.3 trillion last year. Economic Affairs Secretary Subhash Chandra Garg in a news briefing said, “India’s cash ban measure achieved its objective substantially." RBI’s annual report showed 99.3% or 15.3 trillion of the bank notes were returned.

So far this year, the rupee has weakened 9.7%, the worst performer among Asian currencies. Foreign investors have sold $455.53 million and $7.93 billion in equity and debt markets, respectively.

Asian currencies were trading lower. China Offshore lost 0.284%, Indonesian Rupiah 0.238%, China renminbi 0.152, Philippine Peso 0.114%, Malaysian Ringgit 0.085%, Singapore Dollar 0.081%, Thai Baht 0.055% and Hong Kong Dollar 0.001%.

The dollar index, which measures the US currency’s strength against major currencies, was trading at 94.623, up 0.02% from its previous close of 94.60.

With Agency Inputs

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