Home >Markets >Stock Markets >Rupee marches on against US dollar, rises closer to 74.5 per USD

The rupee appreciated as much as 58 paise to 74.59 against the US dollar in early trade today tracking weakness in the greenback and gains in the domestic equity market amid optimism over potential COVID-19 vaccine. It had settled at 75.01 against the greenback on Thursday.

Forex traders said investors were bullish on emerging market assets following encouraging vaccine test results reported by Pfizer. Moreover, positive domestic equities, steady crude oil prices and weak US currency supported the local unit.

A potential COVID-19 vaccine indigenously developed by the Ahmedabad-based Zydus Cadila Healthcare Ltd has got the nod from the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI) for human clinical trials.

Recently, another vaccine candidate Covaxin, developed by the Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech in collaboration with the ICMR and the National Institute of Virology (NIV), had got the nod for human clinical trials from the DCGI.

Meanwhile, the dollar index, which gauges the greenback's strength against a basket of six currencies, fell 0.11% to 97.195.

On the domestic equity market front, the 30-share BSE benchmark Sensex was over 150 points higher in noon trade.

Foreign institutional investors were net sellers in the capital market as they sold shares worth 556.72 crore on Thursday, according to provisional exchange data.

The rupee has gained sharply this week amid an improvement in global risk sentiment after rising over 50 paise in the previous week.

"It will be interesting to see how much the RBI allows the Rupee to adjust. It has so far not allowed positioning to build up in any direction and has kept speculators at bay. Given this regime's commitment to keeping volatility low, it will be interesting to see where the new floor in USDINR is for the medium term," said Abhishek Goenka Founder and CEO IFA Global.

Brent crude futures, the global oil benchmark, fell 0.90 per cent to USD 42.75 per barrel.

Meanwhile, the number of cases around the world linked to COVID-19 has crossed 1.08 crore and the death toll has topped 5.20 lakh.

In India, the death toll due the disease rose to 18,213 and the number of infections spiked to 6,25,544, according to the health ministry. (With Agency Inputs)

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