Mumbai: The Indian rupee on Tuesday opened little changed against the US dollar amid caution ahead of the Reserve Bank of India's bi-monthly monetary policy meeting starting today. Asian currencies were mixed as uncertainty over the phase one trade deal grew amid US-China disputes over human rights violations in Hong Kong.

At 9.10 am, the domestic currency was trading at 71.65 a dollar against Monday's close of 71.66. The Indian unit had opened 71.66 a dollar.

The three-day meeting of the central bank starts today and the policy statement is due on Thursday. Eight of 10 economists and treasury heads surveyed by Mint expect RBI’s monetary policy committee (MPC) to cut the repo rate at which RBI lends to banks by 25 basis points (bps) to 4.9%, while maintaining an accommodative stance. Two expect the RBI to cut rates by 15bps.

In the year so far, the rupee has weakened 2.64%, while foreign investors have bought nearly $13.37 billion in Indian equities and $4.24 billion in debt.

The yield on the 10-year Indian government bond was at 6.49% compared with its previous close of 6.489%. The benchmark Sensex was flat at 40766.55 points. Year to date, it has gained 13.12%.

Asian currencies were mixed as uncertainty over the phase one trade deal grew amid US-China disputes over human rights violations in Hong Kong.

The Malaysian ringgit was up 0.17%, China Offshore rose 0.1% and Taiwan dollar gained 0.06%. South Korean won fell 0.17%, Japanese yen declined 0.16%, Hong Kong dollar and Indonesian rupiah were down 0.03% each.

The dollar index, which measures the US currency’s strength against a basket of major currencies, was at 97.937 against its previous close of 97.856.

(Bloomberg contributed this story)

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