Rupee near 2-week low on strong dollar, importer demand

Rupee near 2-week low on strong dollar, importer demand

Mumbai: The rupee hovered near a two-week low on Thursday weighed by dollar’s gains following Japan’s intervention to stem the yen’s rise supported by robust dollar demand from oil refiners for import payments to Iran.

At 1:45pm, the partially convertible rupee was at 44.4500/4550 per dollar, weaker than Wednesday’s close of 44.31/32.

Volatile local shares added to rupee’s woes, traders said.

The yen slid 3% versus the dollar on Thursday as Japan intervened to curb the currency’s strength to support its export-led economy, one day after the Swiss central bank unveiled a shock cut in interest rates to cap a soaring Swiss franc.

The index of the dollar against six major currencies was up 1 percent to 74.784 points from 74.148 points at end of local forex trade on Wednesday.

The euro was at $1.4236 versus $1.4290 when the rupee closed on Wednesday.

Refiners have been buying dollars for days to clear dues of about $5 billion to Iran. The payments had been held up for seven months after the Indian central bank scrapped a clearing mechanism last December.